Something Within

Something Within : Religion in African-American Political Activism

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Frederick Harris wades into a perennially contentious debate: the degree to which religious experience is central to African American political involvement and success. For the first time applying the new techniques of a cultural resource model to this question, Harris makes a strong case for the formative influence of religion, both as a source of strength and often determinative in practical political consequences. Harris's argument overturns a large body of quantitative research on political activity, principally in the Chicago religious community.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 240 pages
  • 163.3 x 242.1 x 26.2mm | 612.11g
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 20 figures, 14 tables
  • 0195120337
  • 9780195120332

Review quote

W.E.B. Du Bois saw black religion and political activism in America as gifts that black people gave to America, thus nurturing its democratic practices and its soul in spite of the racism and rejection they faced. In considering both religion and political activism as interacting and multidimensional factors, Professor Harris provides a theoretically sophisticated and ethnographically rich window into the way the black church organizes and offers these gifts in
contemporary society. Overall this book is an absolute must read for anyone interested in the political implications of religion in a multi racial United States for the twenty first century. * Cheryl Townsend Gilkes, Colby College * Something Within is a wonderful blend of statistical data and telling anecdotes, all pointing to the importance of the church in the politics of the African-American community. The book takes seriously the impact of religious belief and practice in empowering citizens to be politically active. This is a book that should be read by anyone interested in religion and politics, in the role of voluntary associations in building civil society, or in
African-American politics. * Clyde Wilcox, Georgetown University * This meticulously researched book provides significant insight into the intersection of race with religion and politics in the US....In this pioneering work, Harris carefully frames his argument in research familiar to most scholars of religion and politics. The nonspecialist benefits from Harris's use of participant observation to bring reality to theory. Highly recommended. * Choice * ...Harris ably supports his arguments and weaves a readable and informative narrative... * Journal of Church and State *
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