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African American Studies: Religion

A guide to resources at Princeton University Library.

Web resources

AARDOC: African-American Religion: A Documentary History Project 

Divining America:  Religion in American History  Sponsored by the National Humanities Center, the Divining America website includes subsidiary pages on several topics in African-American religious history:  African-American Christianity, Part I:  To the Civil WarAfrican American Christianity, Part II: From the Civil War to the Great Migration, 1865-1920Islam in America:  From African Slaves to Malcolm X, and Marcus Garvey and the Universal Negro Improvement Association.    Each page includes an introductory essay and links to online resources, comprising many primary sources.

The Church in the Southern Black Community, 1780-1925  "The Church in the Southern Black Community" collects autobiographies, biographies, church documents, sermons, histories, encyclopedias, and other published materials. These texts present a collected history of the way Southern African Americans experienced and transformed Protestant Christianity into the central institution of community life. Coverage begins with white churches' conversion efforts, especially in the post-Revolutionary period, and depicts the tensions and contradictions between the egalitarian potential of evangelical Christianity and the realities of slavery. It focuses, through slave narratives and observations by other African American authors, on how the black community adapted evangelical Christianity, making it a metaphor for freedom, community, and personal survival.”

A Religious Portrait of African Americans A study of religious affiliation, demographics, beliefs and practices, and social and political views.

Society for the Study of Black Religions One of the major goals of the SSBR is “to engage in scholarly research and discussion about the religious experiences of Blacks.”  There are links to resources and the Society’s newsletter from 1980 to present.