By Albert J. Raboteau
"A fireplace within the Bones is greater than a historical past of black Christians: it's the compelling tale of the ways that black folks have grew to become to Christianity to explain their background and plight in the United States and to undertaking their imaginative and prescient of redemption to the higher state . . . A needs to read." --Craig Steven Wilder, manhattan Newsday "A significant contribution . . . fantastically narrated." --Rembert Weakland, the hot York instances booklet evaluate
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Additional info for A Fire in the Bones
Several ''African" churches, as they were called, sprang up before 1800. Some of these black congregations were independent to the extent that they called their own pastors and officers, joined local associations with white churches, and sent their own delegates to associational meetings. This early independence of black preachers and churches was curtailed during the antebellum period, particularly in reaction to slave conspiracies, when all gatherings of blacks for whatever purpose were viewed with alarm.
Or consider the more timely controversy over the sooth anniversary of Cristóbal Colón's fateful landfall on an island called Guanahani by its Arawak inhabitants and San Salvador by the admiral. Was Columbus's voyage a discovery, an invasion, or an encounter? And from whose perspective? To take an example from my own work on the religious history of American slaves, one of the most fundamental interpretations of national history, repeated so long and so often that it has taken on the power of myth, is the image of America as a New Israel.
Often lonely, difficult, tedious work, historical research can involve months and years of searching in dusty archives through mountains of manuscript and printed sources for the nuggets of information that go into reconstructing a glimpse of the past. Delayed gratification is an apt description of a good deal of the research experience. Obviously, I am describing an ideal (shaped no doubt by my own education in the liberal arts curriculum of a Jesuit university), and yet I think the ideal describes values that we in the academy lose at the peril of our souls.
A Fire in the Bones by Albert J. Raboteau