9780190246815

Born of Conviction White Methodists and Mississippi's Closed Society

by
  • ISBN13:

    9780190246815

  • ISBN10:

    0190246812

  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2015-12-01
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press

Note: Supplemental materials are not guaranteed with Rental or Used book purchases.

Purchase Benefits

  • Free Shipping On Orders Over $35!
    Your order must be $35 or more to qualify for free economy shipping. Bulk sales, PO's, Marketplace items, eBooks and apparel do not qualify for this offer.
  • Get Rewarded for Ordering Your Textbooks! Enroll Now
List Price: $39.41 Save up to $3.94
  • Rent Book $35.47
    Add to Cart Free Shipping

    TERM
    PRICE
    DUE

Supplemental Materials

What is included with this book?

  • The New copy of this book will include any supplemental materials advertised. Please check the title of the book to determine if it should include any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.
  • The Rental copy of this book is not guaranteed to include any supplemental materials. Typically, only the book itself is included. This is true even if the title states it includes any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.

Summary

Winner of the Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters' Nonfiction Award

The dominant narrative of the role of white citizens and the white church in Mississippi's civil rights era focuses on their intense resistance to change. The "Born of Conviction" statement, signed by twenty-eight white Methodist pastors and published in the Mississippi Methodist Advocate on January 2, 1963, offered an alternative witness to the segregationist party line. Calling for freedom of the pulpit and reminding readers of the Methodist Discipline's claim that the teachings of Jesus permit "no discrimination because of race, color, or creed," the pastors sought to speak to and for a mostly silent yet significant minority of Mississippians, and to lead white Methodists to join the conversation on the need for racial justice. The document additionally expressed support for public schools and opposition to any attempt to close them, and affirmed the signers' opposition to Communism. Though a few individuals, both laity and clergy, voiced public affirmation of "Born of Conviction," the overwhelming reaction was negative-by mid-1964, eighteen of the signers had left Mississippi, evidence of the challenges faced by whites who offered even mild dissent to massive resistance in the Deep South.

Dominant narratives, however, rarely tell the whole story. The statement caused a significant crack in the public unanimity of Mississippi white resistance. Signers and their public supporters also received private messages of gratitude for their stand, and eight of the signers would remain in the Methodist ministry in Mississippi until retirement. Born of Conviction tells the story of "the Twenty-Eight" illuminating the impact on the larger culture of this attempt by white clergy to support race relations change. The book explores the theological and ethical understandings of the signers through an account of their experiences before, during, and after the statement's publication. It also offers a detailed portrait of both public and private expressions of the theology and ethics of white Mississippi Methodists in general, as revealed by their responses to the "Born of Conviction" controversy.

Author Biography


Joseph T. Reiff is Professor of Religion and Chair of the Religion Department at Emory & Henry College.

Table of Contents


Born of Conviction Cast of Characters
Introduction: At the Church Steps

Part I: Prelude to a Crisis
Chapter 1: Methodism and Mississippi
Chapter 2: The Road to Born of Conviction: Sources of Dissent
Chapter 3: Mississippi 1962

Part II: Born of Conviction: Call and Response
Chapter 4: A Time to Speak
Chapter 5: Methodist Ministers Shatter Vacuum: January 1963
Chapter 6: Congregational and Community Responses

Part III: What Became of the Twenty-eight?
Chapter 7: Spoke Out, Forced Out?
Chapter 8: Continuing Exodus
Chapter 9: A Mind to Stay Here

Part IV: Memory and Legacy
Chapter 10: Assessing and Remembering Born of Conviction
Chapter 11: Legacies of Born of Conviction

Acknowledgments
Appendix 1: Text of "Born of Conviction" Statement
Abbreviations
Notes
Selected Bibliography

Rewards Program

Write a Review