By Andrea C. Abrams
Blackness, as an idea, is intensely fluid: it will probably confer with cultural and ethnic id, socio-political prestige, a classy and embodied means of being, a social and political awareness, or a diasporic kinship. it really is used as an outline of pores and skin colour starting from the palest cream to the richest chocolate; as a marker of enslavement, marginalization, criminal activity, dirt, or evil; or as a logo of satisfaction, good looks, attractiveness, energy, and intensity. even though it really is elusive and hard to outline, blackness serves as essentially the most effective and unifying domain names of identity.
God and Blackness; deals an ethnographic learn of blackness because it is known inside a particular community—that of the 1st Afrikan Church, a middle-class Afrocentric congregation in Atlanta, Georgia. Drawing on approximately years of player remark and in-depth interviews, Andrea C. Abrams examines how this neighborhood has hired Afrocentrism and Black theology as a way of negotiating the unreconciled natures of innovations and beliefs which are a part of being either black and American. particularly, Abrams examines the ways that First Afrikan's development of group is inspired through shared understandings of blackness, and probes the ability in which contributors negotiate the tensions created through competing structures in their black id. even though Afrocentrism operates because the point of interest of this dialogue, the e-book examines questions of political id, non secular expression and gender dynamics in the course of the lens of a different black church.
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Extra resources for God and Blackness: Race, Gender, and Identity in a Middle Class Afrocentric Church
It is important to note that, while I do use the real names of Reverend Lomax, Reverend Coleman and Elder Toure, with their permission, all other names of First Afrikan members are pseudonyms. In order to protect the anonymity of the church members, I have altered identifying details in my descriptions of their physical appearances, occupations, and locations. As I am an African American woman, this project can be considered native anthropology. A native anthropologist studies her own community.
I mean, I was black and I knew that I couldn’t get away from it. I didn’t like being black sometimes, I will be honest about that. ” “I didn’t know what it really meant to be black outside of what I’ve been doing for thirty-one years. I remember saying all the time that I envied people who were of the Jewish faith. I envied people who were >> 43 44 << Situating the Self of the Islamic faith only because they were living their way of life, and it seemed so often that, you know, us, black people, we just really just kind of did whatever.
On the one hand, for the middle class black person, there is the contention that achieving middle class status is a positive thing in that it reflects worthiness and the ability to overcome racist oppression. On the other hand, there is the concern that upward mobility may create alienation from poorer blacks and the fear that blackness may be corrupted by overidentifying with the white middle class. Taken together, these arguments suggest that the black middle class person may feel both allegiance to and alienation from the racial identity he shares with poorer black people as well as the class identity he shares with middle class white people.