Riders for God : The Story of a Christian Motorcycle Gang
A beautifully done photo-documentary book that explores the highly unusual world of a subset of Bikers who coninue their Biker lifestyle, but in the service of Christianity.
- Paperback | 280 pages
- 217.4 x 264.4 x 25.9mm | 1,293.87g
- 01 Sep 2000
- University of Illinois Press
- Baltimore, United States
"[Remsberg's] perceptive skills enable him to fit inconspicuously into the group, and the reader benefits by feeling like a part of this gang -- a unique world of bikers and zealous religious belief. In this interesting and accessible portrayal, Remsberg scrutinizes both the inside workings of the gang (combining 62 photographic images with interviews of gang members) and the people it encounters. The stories of those struggling to make sense of their lives offer great opportunities for reflection." -- Library Journal "Remsberg's eloquent photographs of the Unchained Gang, born-again Christians in Indiana, show them in leathers and patches, praying, taking communion, and blessing their bikes." -- Leo Carey, The New Yorker "Remsberg's study of some midwesterners who inhabit both the world of biker gangs and the world of 'Spirit-filled Christianity' is a grabber. For, unusually enough, when these chopper pilots dismount their hogs, they are, likely as not, headed for Bible reading or an effusive Pentecostal service... Remsberg tells the gang's story in pictures, and they tell it in the words of now one, then another particular member." -- Booklist "Details the world of a Christian motorcycle gang that seems to embody contradiction. The religiously devout Unchained Gang is composed of ex-convicts, recovering addicts, and former outlaw bikers. Interviews reveal how and why, through their conversion to born-again Christianity, the Unchained Gang now conducts a sort of traveling outreach ministry." Doubletake "The interviews Remberg has conducted, no less than the photographs he has taken, are wonderfully ingenuous... Documentary images of the white-trash antics at the annual Bean Blossom Boogie biker rally, the demonstrative communal prayer over the bikes, the altar calls, and the emotional outpourings of faith at the House of Prayer all illuminate the ardent accounts given by gang members of the clash to which they have borne witness betwen divine grace and redneck nihilism... These are men and women in whom Christ has been seized, scourged, murdered, and raised up, and they want the world's attention." -- Michael O. Garvey, Commonweal "I love this book. The best parts are the transcribed interviews, which make up most of the text, and Remsberg's sensitive photographs... Makes clear the sharp lines dividing the world of hard-core bikers ... from Christian groups like the Unchained Gang... By conveying the rich faith language of the biker Christians, Remsberg show us we have much to learn." -- Tex Sample, Christian Century "Combining powerful photographic images with gang members' first-person testimonies, Remsberg shows the ironic juxtaposition of tattoos, leather vests, and the iconography of the biker world with the Christian practices of Bible study, speaking in tongues, and praying at the altar... Through their own powerful stories, [members] explain how the addictions and uncontrollable violence that once shaped their lives have given way to dramatic worship and a zealous ministry." -- mediabistro.com ADVANCE PRAISE "Rich Remsberg listened attentively and compassionately to men and women on the very edges of contemporary American society struggling to make sense of their lives in relation to a God they imagine vividly present to them. The result is an extraordinary book of images and stories. He documents a distinct world of religious practice, that of Christian bikers, and challenges us to learn how to listen to the voices of people feared, ignored, or held in contempt by the rest of society. This is a wonderful book." -- Robert Orsi, author of Thank You St. Jude: Women's Devotion to the Patron Saint of Hopeless Causes "A richly sensitive addition to the documentary tradition. Remsberg has listened carefully and stared dispassionately at this place on the margins of American culture, and the result is a work at once sympathetic and revelatory." -- Peter Bacon Hales, author of Atomic Spaces: Living on the Manhattan Project
Table of contents
Worship -- The word -- Fellowship -- The world -- Redemption.