The New Abolition
W.E.B. Du Bois and the Black Social Gospel
Yale University Press 2018
New Books in African American StudiesNew Books in American StudiesNew Books in Christian StudiesNew Books in HistoryNew Books in Intellectual HistoryNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books in Religion & FaithNew Books Network April 18, 2018 Adam McNeil
The black social gospel–formulated and given voice by abolitionists and post-reconstruction Black men and women–took the United States by storm in the last quarter of the nineteenth century. Black Christians were not the only ones involved in the black social gospel, though. Rev. Dr. Gary Dorrien’s The New Abolition: W.E.B Du Bois and the Black Social Gospel (Yale University Press, 2018) argues that although Du Bois would not consider himself a black social gospel adherent, he was affected by the tradition and came to realize its importance in the milieu of social democracy. Dorrien uses black social gospel to chart an intellectual and theological map of the tradition that gave birth to the leader of one of America’s most radical social movements: Dr. Martin Luther King.
Adam McNeil is a soon-to-be PhD student and Colored Conventions Project Scholar at the University of Delaware. He received his M.A in History at Simmons College and B.S. in History at Florida A&M University. He can be reached on Twitter @CulturedModesty.