Jacquineau Azétsop S.J.

14971693_10208116694223100_1080202998_oFather Jacquineau Azétsop, S.J. was born in Douala, Cameroon, in 1972 and was ordained priest on the 21st of June 2003. He was awarded a Baccalaureate in Philosophy at St. Peter Canisius in Kinshasa, a Baccalaureate in Theology at Hekima College in Nairobi, Kenya, and then received a degree in Theology at Weston Jesuit School of Theology; he proceeded to a degree in Public Health at the Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University and continued to a Doctorate in Public Health and Social Ethics at Boston College School of Arts and Sciences.
Having arrived at the Gregorian in 2014, he holds courses in structural interventions, a methodological course for those who frequent the second year of the Licentiate, as well as second and third year doctoral students, and he teaches sociology of health. Next year he will also run courses in sociology of inequality, in sociology of suffering and a seminar on Paolo Freire.

Follow the interview in which Father Azétsop presents the specialization in Sociology

Father Azetsop, why is it important to study sociology today?
It’s very important because sociology provides the instruments to analyze society, so we can understand and explain social phenomenon. Furthermore, now we live in an era where things change easily and sociology therefore has something to say because, by means of its method, it is possible to explain social changes.

What does the Gregorian University offer in the field of sociology?
We have a teaching body composed of people that undertake research in many fields: migration, criminology, politics, work, family, health, conflicts, social politics, and so on. This variety, also taking into account the diverse origins of our teachers, is a beautiful richness of shared experience. There are diverse perspectives in sociology here, a richness you do not find in other universities. Another element to underline is that our ethic comes from the teaching of the Church.

According to you, why is sociology important?
I remember when I was not a sociologist, when I was studying public health, that some of my professors were saying if you cannot count you cannot do public sociology. Every student must know how to measure. Different theories which explain how phenomena takes place are also important. There are many elements that constitute a social phenomenon.

What kind of person would study sociology offered at the Gregorian University?
Our Faculty of Social Sciences trains anyone who wants to study sociology, especially people who will play a leadership role in the Church, those who want to conduct social research and, finally, those who want to teach at university level or in major seminaries. The faculty is, however, open to everyone.
What I have seen in two years is that there are very different students; those wanting to study because they have been sent here, those wanting to change something in people’s lives, those wanting to study to play important roles in their diocese, and finally future teachers, professors and researchers.
For me, to give greater meaning to the training received, it is important to study having a fairly clear idea of what you can do in society. It is indeed gratifying to know how many have studied sociology and who are now able to help people in their social contexts.