African American Religious History: A Documentary Witness / Edition 2

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This widely-heralded collection of remarkable documents offers a view of African American religious history from Africa and early America through Reconstruction to the rise of black nationalism, civil rights, and black theology of today. The documents—many of them rare, out-of-print, or difficult to find—include personal narratives, sermons, letters, protest pamphlets, early denominational histories, journalistic accounts, and theological statements. In this volume Olaudah Equiano describes Ibo religion. Lemuel Haynes gives a black Puritan’s farewell. Nat Turner confesses. Jarena Lee becomes a female preacher among the African Methodists. Frederick Douglass discusses Christianity and slavery. Isaac Lane preaches among the freedmen. Nannie Helen Burroughs reports on the work of Baptist women. African Methodist bishops deliberate on the Great Migration. Bishop C. H. Mason tells of the Pentecostal experience. Mahalia Jackson recalls the glory of singing at the 1963 March on Washington. Martin Luther King, Jr. writes from the Birmingham jail.
Originally published in 1985, this expanded second edition includes new sources on women, African missions, and the Great Migration. Milton C. Sernett provides a general introduction as well as historical context and comment for each document.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780822324492
  • Publisher: Duke University Press Books
  • Publication date: 12/28/1999
  • Series: The C. Eric Lincoln Series on the Black Experience
  • Edition description: Second Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 608
  • Sales rank: 455,615
  • Product dimensions: 6.09 (w) x 9.19 (h) x 1.56 (d)

Meet the Author

Milton C. Sernett is Professor of African-American studies at Syracuse University. He is the author of several books, including Bound for the Promised Land, also published by Duke University Press.

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Table of Contents

Preface to the Second Edition
Introduction 1
1 Traditional Ibo Religion and Culture 13
2 African Religions in Colonial Jamaica 20
3 Slave Conversion on the Carolina Frontier 25
4 "Address to the Negroes in the State of New York" 34
5 Letters from Pioneer Black Baptists 44
6 A Black Puritan's Farewell 52
7 Plantation Churches: Visible and Invisible 63
8 "Proud of that 'Ole Time' Religion" 69
9 Conjuration and Witchcraft 76
10 "Great Moral Dilemma" 81
11 Religion and Slave Insurrection 89
12 Slaveholding Religion and the Christianity of Christ 102
13 Slave Songs and Spirituals 112
14 "Life Experience and Gospel Labors" 139
15 Rise of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church 155
16 A Female Preacher among the African Methodists 164
17 African Baptists Celebrate Emancipation in New York State 185
18 "Our Wretchedness in Consequence of the Preachers of Religion" 193
19 "Mrs. Stewart's Farewell Address to Her Friends in the City of Boston" 202
20 "To the Citizens of New York" 211
21 Black Churches in New York City, 1840 218
22 Protesting the "Negro Pew" 224
23 "I Will Not Live a Slave" 228
24 "Welcome to the Ransomed" 232
25 From Slave to Preacher among the Freedmen 245
26 "The Colored Methodist Episcopal Church" 251
27 Black Religion in the Post-Reconstruction South 256
28 "Education in the A.M.E. Church" 261
29 The Travail of a Female Colored Evangelist 270
30 "The Regeneration of Africa" 282
31 Emigration to Africa 289
32 The First African American Catholic Congress, 1889 296
33 1899 Presidential Address to the National Baptist Convention 301
34 Bishop C. H. Mason, Church of God in Christ 314
35 "Of the Faith of the Fathers" 325
36 "The Race Problem in a Christian State, 1906" 337
37 "What Induced Me to Build a School in the Rural District" 347
38 Address on the Great Migration 359
39 "Dear Mary" and "My dear Sister" 364
40 Social Work at Olivet Baptist Church 368
41 Effects of Urbanization on Religious Life 372
42 Report of the Work of Baptist Women 376
43 Address to the Suehn Industrial Mission, Liberia 403
A Letter from the "Foreign Field" 410
44 "Things of the Spirit" 415
45 "The Genius of the Negro Church" 423
46 "The Churches of Bronzeville" 435
47 Garvey Tells His Own Story 453
48 "Organized Religion and the Cults" 464
49 Black Judaism in Harlem 473
50 "The Realness of God, to you-wards ..." 478
51 Elder Lucy Smith 487
52 "Self-Government in the New World" 499
53 "National Baptist Philosophy of Civil Rights" 511
54 "Letter from Birmingham Jail - April 16, 1963" 519
55 Singing of Good Tidings and Freedom 536
56 "The Anatomy of Segregation and Ground of Hope" 548
57 "Black Power" Statement, July 31, 1966, and "Black Theology" Statement, June 13, 1969 555
58 "Black Theology and the Black Church: Where Do We Go from Here?" 567
59 "The Black Churches: A New Agenda" 580
Index 589
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