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By Anthony B. Pinn (eds.)

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Extra info for Black Religion and Aesthetics: Religious Thought and Life in Africa and the African Diaspora

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Man is a promise that he must never break . . ”30 The protagonist, Fred Daniels, in “The Man Who Lived Underground” expresses a similar commitment to self-realization within the context of others when reflecting on his effort to show the police officers what he had discovered in the cave: “He was eager to show them the cave now. If he could show them what he had seen, then they would feel what he had felt and they in turn would show it to others and those others would feel as they had felt . .

Black women struggle with the impossible task of negotiating self-hatred while simultaneously charged with the responsibility of care for all others. ”1 This distorted thinking concerning our bodies is the legacy of having survived North American chattel slavery. In the undocumented, but painfully truthful, article entitled “Let’s Make a Slave,” attributed to Willie Lynch, Lynch describes formulaic 38 N a nc y Ly n n e W e s t f i e l d ways of preparing a woman to be a slave. Lynch writes Take the female and run a series of tests on her to see if she will submit to your desires willingly.

In working through this issue, drawing on African American literature is beneficial in that it tends to wrestle with theological questions and concerns without a deep regard for Christian doctrine at the expense of creative thinking—a problem that plagues much of what qualifies as more formal Black and Womanist theological discourse. ” I do this because Wright’s existential writings provide one of the best examples of an African American humanist perspective within literature. He provides an A Be au t i f u l B E - I N G 29 explicit challenge to traditional Black Christian theological formulations that helps illuminate the contours of what might qualify as the initial outline of an African American humanist soteriology.

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