Tomorrow (August 5th) is the birthday of theologian James Cone. In honor of the occasion, we offer this introductory reading guide to his work.
We’ve ordered this list in the order that we think the books should be read, and we offer a brief explanation of why each book was included. We’ve included excerpts of most the books via Google Books.
6. The Spirituals and the Blues: An InterpretationJourney: New And Selected Poems 1969-1999 (Pitt Poetry Series)
Cone explores two classic aspects of African-American culture–the spirituals and the blues. He tells the captivating story of how slaves and the children of slaves used this music to affirm their essential humanity in the face of oppression. The blues are shown to be a “this-worldly” expression of cultural and political rebellion. The spirituals tell about the “attempt to carve out a significant existence in a very trying situation.”