Professor Allan Anderson BTh, MA, MTh, DTh

Professor Allan Anderson

Department of Theology and Religion
Professor of Mission and Pentecostal Studies

Contact details

ERI Building
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

I teach and research in the areas of the history, theology and mission studies relating to the global Pentecostal and Charismatic movements, with some concentration on the history of these movements in Africa and Asia, and the history of world Christianity. I lead the Master of Arts programme in Pentecostal and Charismatic Studies


BTh, MA, MTh, DTh (University of South Africa, 1992)


I was born in London but raised in Zimbabwe, completing my higher education and first theological appointments in South Africa. I was a minister, principal of Tshwane Theological College near Pretoria and part-time researcher at the University of South Africa before joining Selly Oak Colleges as Director of the Centre for New Religious Movements in 1995, becoming an honorary lecturer and,  from 1999, a lecturer at the University of Birmingham.

I was awarded a Chair in 2005. My main interests are in the areas of the history, mission and theology of Pentecostalism in Africa and Asia. I am the author of four books on South African Pentecostalism, one on African independent churches, and three books on global Pentecostalism that have received international acclaim. My Introduction to Pentecostalism has been translated and published in Spanish and is being translated into three other languages, and now has a second edition.

I am also the author of many articles, and have joint-edited four collections on Pentecostalism. I was editor of the peer-reviewed journal published at Equinox, PentecoStudies. I am a founder-member of the European Research Network on Global Pentecostalism which conducts research in four European universities, and I also serve on the interational editorial board of four academic journals. I am an internationally well-known scholar in my field.


I teach in the areas of the history of world Christianity, of global Evangelicalism and Pentecostalism, and Independency in Africa and Asia.

Postgraduate supervision

  • History, theology and missiology of Pentecostalism
  • Pentecostalism and contemporary cultures


My main research is in the areas of Pentecostal history and intercultural theology. I am currently working on the relationship between Pentecostalism and African popular religious ideas, and recently published a book on this subject. I have also published a book on Pentecostalism in the global South in the prestigious series Oxford Studies in World Christianities. I have written nine monographs on African Christianity and global Pentecostalism, the latest being Spirit-Filled Word: Religious Dis/Continuity in African Pentecostalism (Palgrave Macmillan, 2018), An Introduction to Pentecostalism: Global Charismatic Christianity, 2nd ed (Cambridge, 2013), To the Ends of the Earth: Pentecostalism and the Transformation of World Christianity (Oxford, 2013), Spreading Fires: The Missionary Nature of Early Pentecostalism (SCM & Orbis, 2007), African Reformation: African Initiated Christianity in the Twentieth Century (Africa World Press, 2001), and Zion and Pentecost: The Spirituality and Experience of Pentecostal and Zionist/Apostolic Churches in South Africa (Unisa Press, 2000).

I have co-edited and written a chapter in Studying Global Pentecostalism: Theories and Methods (University of California Press, 2010); edited (with Walter J Hollenweger) and written three chapters of a volume entitled Pentecostals After a Century: Global Perspectives on a Movement in Transition (Sheffield Academic Press, 1999). With Edmond Tang, I have edited a volume on Asian Pentecostalism entitled Asian and Pentecostal: The Charismatic Face of Asian Christianity 2nd ed (Regnum, 2011).



  • Spirit-Filled Word: Religious Dis/Continuity in African Pentecostalism (Palgrave Macmillan, 2018)
  • ed., with Fanggang Yang & Joy Tong, Global Chinese Pentecostal and Charismatic Christianity (Brill, 2017)
  • An Introduction to Pentecostalism: Global Charismatic Christianity (Cambridge, 2004, 2013)
  • To the Ends of the Earth: Pentecostalism and the Transformation of World Christianity (Oxford, 2013)
  • with David Westerlund, Den världsvida pentekostalismen (Stockholm: Dialogos, 2012)
  • ed., with M. Bergunder, A. Droogers & C. van der Laan, Studying Global Pentecostalism: Theories and Methods (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2010)
  • Spreading Fires: The Missionary Nature of Early Pentecostalism (SCM & Orbis, 2007)
  • El Pentecostalismo: El cristianismo carismatico mundial (Ediciones Akal, 2007)
  • ed. with Edmond Tang, Asian and Pentecostal : The Charismatic Face of Asian Christianity ( Regnum 2005)
  • African Reformation: African Initiated Christianity in the 20th Century (Africa World Press, 2001)
  • Zion and Pentecost: The Spirituality and Experience of Pentecostals and Zionists/Apostolics in South Africa (University of South Africa Press, 2000)
  • ed., with Walter J. Hollenweger, Pentecostals After a Century (Sheffield Academic Press, 1999)

Recent articles

  • ‘Witchdemonology, Witchcraft and Deliverance in African Pentecostalism’, in Lord Elorm-Donkor & Clifton R, Clarke (eds.), African Pentecostal Missions Maturing (Wipf & Stock, 2018), 121-141.
  • Contextualization in Pentecostalism: A Multicultural Perspective’, in International Bulletin of Mission Research 41:1 (January 2017), 29-40.
  • ‘Pentecostalism in Southern Africa’, in Elias Kifori Bongmba (ed.), Routledge Companion to Christianity in Africa (Routledge, 2016), 317-330.
  • ‘Eritrean Pentecostals as Asylum Seekers in Britain’, Journal of Religion in Africa 43:2 (2013), 1-29.
  • ‘The Emergence of a Multidimensional Global Missionary Movement: Trends, Patterns and Expressions’ in Donald E. Miller, Kimon H. Sargent & Richard Flory (eds.), Spirit and Power: The Growth and Global Impact of Pentecostalism (New York: Oxford University Press, 2013), 25-41.
  • ‘African independent churches’, ‘Nee, Watchman’, ‘Ramabai, Pandita Sarasvati’, ‘Sung, John’, in George Thomas Kurian (ed.), The Encyclopedia of Christian Civilization (Blackwell, 2011), Vol.1. 16-18; Vol.3. 1653-54, 1924-25; Vol.4. 2284.
  • ‘Pentecostal-Charismatic Spirituality and Theological Education’, Dharma Deepika: A South Asian Journal of Missiological Research 34, 15:2 (July-December 2011), 27-36.
  • ‘The Significance of Pentecostalism to Mission’, in John Corrie & Cathy Ross (eds.), Mission in Context: Explorations Inspired by J. Andrew Kirk (Ashgate, 2012), 229-41.
  • ‘A “Time to Share Love”: Global Pentecostalism and the Social Ministry of David Yonggi Cho’, Journal of Pentecostal Theology 21 (2012), 152-167.
  • ‘African Pentecostalism’, ‘European Pentecostalism’ , ‘Keswick Movement’, ‘Origins’, ‘Parham, Charles Fox’, ‘Ramabai, Pandita’, ‘Seymour, William Joseph’, in Adam Stewart (ed.), Handbook of Pentecostal Christianity (North Illinois University Press, 2012), 27-31, 76-81, 128-30, 166-70, 173-77, 186-90.
  • ‘Globalization and Independent Pentecostals in Africa: A South African Perspective’ in Afe Adogame (ed.), Who is Afraid of the Holy Ghost: Pentecostalism and Globalization in Africa and Beyond (Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press, 2011)
  • ‘Intercultural Theology, Walter J. Hollenweger and African Pentecostalism’, in Mark J. Cartledge & David Cheetham (eds.), Intercultural Theology: Approaches and Themes (London: SCM, 2011)
  • ‘Pentecostal Theology’, in David Ferguson, Karen Kilby, Iain Torrance & Ian McFarland (eds), Cambridge Dictionary of Christian Theology (CUP, 2011)
  • ‘“The present world-wide revival… brought up in India”: Pandita Ramabai and the origins of Pentecostalism’, in Roger E. Hedlund, Sebastian Kim & Rajkumar Boaz Johnson (eds.), Indian and Christian: The Life and Legacy of Pandita Ramabai (New Delhi: ISPK, 2011)
  • ‘Deliverance and Exorcism in Majority World Pentecostalism’, in William Kay & Robin Parry (eds.), Deliverance and Exorcism: Interdisciplinary Perspectives (Milton Keynes: Paternoster, 2011), 101-19.
  • 33 entries in J. Gordon Melton (ed.), Encyclopedia of the World’s Religions, 2nd Edition (Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-Clio, 2010)
  • ‘The Roots of Pentecostal Globalization: Early Pentecostal Missions’, in Steven M. Studebaker (ed.), Pentecostalism and Globalization: The Impact of Globalization on Pentecostal Theology and Ministry (Eugene, OR: Wipf & Stock, 2010)
  • ‘Varieties, Definitions and Taxonomies’, in A. Anderson, M. Bergunder, A. Droogers & C. van der Laan (eds.), Studying Global Pentecostalism: Theories and Methods (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2010)
  • (with Julie Ma). ‘Pentecostalism’, in Todd M. Johnson & Kenneth R. Ross (eds.), Atlas of Global Christianity (Edinburgh University Press, 2010)
  • ‘Pentecostalism as a Global Movement in the 1990s’, in Klaus Korschorke (ed.), Falling Walls: The Year 1989/90 as Turning Point in the History of World Christianity (Wiesbaden, Germany: Harrassowitz, 2009), pp. 415-427.
  • ‘Pentecostalism in India and China in the early twentieth century and inter-religious relations’, in David Westerlund (ed.), Global Pentecostalism: Encounters with Other Religious Traditions (London: IB Tauris, 2009) (London: IB Tauris, 2009)


  • Pentecostalism, including African and Afro-American experience
  • World Christianity