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This chapter considers the figure of the angel as found in Serres’s Angels: A Modern Myth and in the thought and practice of Ethiopian Orthodox Christianity. Its aim is not to theorize Ethiopia through the philosophy of Serres but to explore a matter of shared concern between them: asking how angels operate as divine message-bearers and agents of transformation. This comparison reveals angelology to be a deeply practical endeavor concerned with asking how messages get where they need to and how the world is organized such that meaning is possible. Serres draws the reader away from the secular territory to which anthropology usually confines itself; he allows the reader to ask questions about the nature of angels. But this also opens the possibility of speaking heretically, of uttering divine falsehoods. And so this chapter explores the problems—and opportunities—of anthropologists risking heresy.

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