A Methodist Perspective on Aid-dependency in Haitian Protestantism

  • Marcus Torchon

Student thesis: Unknown


Abstract Aid-dependency in Haitian Protestantism attracts a diverse range of views which either endorse or dispute its usefulness in alleviating the suffering of the economically poor. This debate is equally recurrent, globally, in secular as well as church settings. As part of the debate, this thesis portfolio studies aid-dependency as a research problem, that is, an intellectual stimulus, calling for an answer in the form of a research inquiry. The inquiry delineates a multi-disciplinary research methodology with a distinctive focus on the qualitative characteristics of a case study in Haitian Methodism and the tasks of practical theology. The methodology is further constituted by both a literature review which provides etic data and fieldwork which welcomes emic data. The outcome generates a hypothesis which is constructed as ‘Aid-dependency has disempowered Haitian Protestantism by inhibiting self-sufficiency’. Continuing with this, etic data embodies the hypothesis in three literary-based theoretical categories: (1) ‘aid embodies characteristics of empowerment’, (2) ‘aid-dependency fosters socio-economic disempowerment’, and (3) ‘aid-dependency contributes to ineffective poverty-alleviation’. Furthermore, emic data sustains the hypothesis in four core themes: (1) ‘positive contribution of aid’, (2) ‘inhibitive outcome of aid-dependency’, (3) ‘expression of disempowerment’, and (4) ‘alternate response’. Altogether, on the pivot of aid-dependency, the themes socio-economic disempowerment and empowerment encapsulate the telos of the portfolio. Pragmatically, this advocates the empowerment of the Haitian majority. To achieve this, empowerment narratives and strategies invite aid-providers to validate aid-receivers’ informed consent and distil their paternalistic objectifying perspective. This empowerment alternative requires agreed institutional and national consensuses to break disempowering cultures of silence and epitomize the Haitian collective dream of prosperity in a context of needed change. The portfolio explores aid-dependency’s features, creates the awareness of its functionality and advocates empowerment as a contribution to scholarly knowledge.
Date of Award1 Aug 2020
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • The University of Manchester
SupervisorBenjamin Pugh (Supervisor) & Justin Thacker (Supervisor)


  • Poverty, Aid-dependency, Haitian Protestantism, Aid-receivers, Aid-providers, NGOs, Culture of Silence, Palliative Economics, Theological Vision, Disempowerment, Recalibration, Empowerement

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