Pub. Date:
New York University Press
Freedom's Prophet: Bishop Richard Allen, the AME Church, and the Black Founding Fathers / Edition 1

Freedom's Prophet: Bishop Richard Allen, the AME Church, and the Black Founding Fathers / Edition 1

by Richard S. Newman


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780814758267
Publisher: New York University Press
Publication date: 03/01/2008
Pages: 359
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Richard Newman is Professor of History at Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, New York. He is the author of The Transformation of American Abolitionism: Fighting Slavery in the Early Republic and co-editor of the series, Race in the Atlantic World, 1700–1900.

Table of Contents

Preface and Acknowledgments
Introduction: A Black Founder’s Many Worlds
1 “For Zion’s Sake . . . I Will Not Rest”
2 Gospel Labors
3 The Year of the Fever, Part 1: A (Deceptively) Simple Narrative of the Black People
4 The Year of the Fever, Part 2: Allen’s Antislavery Appeal
5 “We Participate in Common”: Allen’s Role as a Black Mediator
6 A Liberating Theology: Establishing the AME Church
7 Stay or Go? Allen and African Colonization
8 Allen Challenged: Shadow Politics and Community Con?ict in the 1820s
9 A Black Founder’s Expanding Visions
10 Last Rights
Conclusion: Richard Allen and the Soul of Black Reform
About the Author

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

The subject of Allen's broader importance is what Richard S. Newman tries to capture in this superb new biography of America's first black elected and consecrated bishop." "Scholars and students, already familiar with Allen, will know him even better after reading the Newman biography."-Church History,

"Richard S. Newman... convincingly places Richard Allen (1760-1831) at the forefront of agitators and advocates of racial equality and social justice... Newman's current volume emerges as an indispensable read for church historians and scholars of the African American religious experience... This volume will doubtlessly stand as the definitive work on Richard Allen for many years to come."-SCJ,

“Few Americans know the extraordinary story of Richard Allen, who rose from slavery in colonial America to become a prosperous entrepreneur and inspirational preacher in the early republic. In this bold biography, Newman rescues Allen from obscurity to achieve a larger goal: to recognize African Americans as active makers of the American republic. The book's title is provocative, since few people think of blacks as 'founding fathers,' but instead as passive victims in an era dominated by their owners: Jefferson, Washington, Madison, Hamilton. ‘Above all else,’ Newman explains, 'this book poses a simple question: what happens if we put Richard Allen into the hallowed American founding generation?' The question turns out to have many consequences, for including blacks offers a fuller and truer picture of our origins as a nation—and of our potential as a republic.”
-The New Republic


“Newman sees Richard Allen as a black founding father, engaged in developing a nation within a nation, joining blacks to one another in separate institutions within the new republic. It has been a continuing challenge in which charismatic preachers have had a central role.”
-The New York Review of Books


&8221;In this elegant and insightful biography, historian Newman (The Transformation of American Abolitionism) offers a vivid portrait of Bishop Richard Allen. . . . Newman's beautifully written study is not only a first-rate social history of the early Republic and African-American culture and religion, it provides a detailed sketch of Allen that is sure to become the definitive biography of the leader.&8221;
-Publishers Weekly Starred Review

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