Witnessing and Testifying: Black Women, Religion, and Civil Rights  -     By: Rosetta E. Ross
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Witnessing and Testifying: Black Women, Religion, and Civil Rights

Augsburg Fortress / 2003 / Paperback

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Product Description

After a chapter exploring black women's religious context and presenting early examples of this work by women of the ante-bellum and post-Reconstruction eras, Ross looks at seven civil rights activists who continue this tradition. They are Ella Josephine Baker, Septima Poinsette Clark, Fannie Lou Hamer, Victoria Way DeLee, Clara Muhammad, Diane Nash, and Ruby Doris Smith Robinson.

In a fascinating narrative style that draws on biography, social history, and original archival research, Ross shows how their moral formation and work reflect both womanist consciousness and practices of witness and testimony, both emergent from the black religious context.

Ross' major work is engrossing history and moving ethical challenge. Examining black women's civil rights activism as religiously impelled moral practices brings a new insight to work on the movement and lifts up a paradigm for engagement in the mountainous challenges of contemporary social life.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 296
Vendor: Augsburg Fortress
Publication Date: 2003
Dimensions: 9 X 6 (inches)
ISBN: 0800636031
ISBN-13: 9780800636036
Availability: Usually ships in 24-48 hours.

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Publisher's Description

The Civil Rights Movement was not only an epochal social and political event but also a profound moral turning point in American history. Here, for the first time, social ethicist Ross examines the religiously motivated activism of black women in the movement and its moral import.

Library Journal

Using one Muslim and six Christian women as moral exemplars of faith-based action aimed at advancing the common good, Ross (ethics, United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities) explores the confluence of religion, civil rights activism, and black women's contributions to the civic and moral life not only of black Americans but of all citizens. She grounds her argument in summary stories of the pragmatism and spirituality of these seven activist women, displaying their different backgrounds, contexts, and practices. Ross also highlights their common struggle for freedom and universal human flourishing, which she identifies as core black religious values. Ross's engaging and provocative discussion further develops the detail and dimension of the Civil Rights Movement and its legacy not only in battling racial oppression but in confronting inequality in its sundry, insidious guises. A nice complement to works on black organizing tradition, such as Charles Payne's I've Got the Light of Freedom, and an interesting contrast to Anthony Pinn's The Black Church in the Post-Civil Rights Era and A. Roy Eckardt's Black-Woman-Jew. Recommended for larger collections in religious or women's studies, civil rights, black, and U.S. history.-Thomas J. Davis, Arizona State Univ., Tempe Copyright 2003 Cahners Business Information.

Publisher's Weekly

While much attention has been paid to the role of religion in the civil rights movement, most of that has been lavished on ordained clergy and prominent male leaders. Rosetta Ross builds a strong case for women's grassroots importance to the movement in Witnessing and Testifying: Black Women, Religion, and Civil Rights. Ross examines six Christian and one Muslim woman activist, exploring how the history of black women's religious experience in America informed their sense of social responsibility. Ross, an associate professor of ethics at United Theological Seminary in Minnesota, adopts a writing style that is most suited for an academic audience, but the subject matter will have broad appeal. Copyright 2003 Cahners Business Information.

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