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The Cross and the Lynching Tree

The Cross and the Lynching Tree

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Paperback / softback


Free UK P&P
Publisher: Orbis Books (USA)
ISBN: 9781626980051
Number of Pages: 224
Published: 26/03/2013
Width: 20.2 cm
Height: 14 cm

Winner of the 2018 Grawemeyer Award in Religion

"One of the Top 11 Religion Books of the Year," The Huffington Post

First Place Winner in Theology, Catholic Press Association

Gold Medal Winner, Independent Book Publishers Book Awards

The cross and the lynching tree are the two most emotionally charged symbols in the history of the African American community. In this powerful new work, theologian James H. Cone explores these symbols and their interconnection in the history and souls of black folk.

Both the cross and the lynching tree represent the worst in human beings and at the same time a thirst for life that refuses to let the worst determine our final meaning. For African Americans, the image of Jesus, hung on a tree to die, powerfully grounded their faith that God was with them, even in the suffering of the lynching era.

In a work that spans social history, theology, and cultural studies, Cone explores the witness of black artists, writers, preachers, and fighters for justice, including Emmet Till, Martin Luther King Jr, Langston Hughes and Billie Holliday.

James H. Cone

James H. Cone (1938-2018) was the Bill and Judith Moyers Distinguished Professor of Systematic Theology at Union Theological Seminary. His books include A Black Theology of Liberation, Martin & Malcolm & America: A Dream or a Nightmare, and The Cross and the Lynching Tree, winner of the 2018 Grawemeyer Award in Religion. This year he was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

"Based on impressive research, Cone argues that the lynching tree is a viable reality/symbol for reflection on the cross of Christ. According to Cone, understandings of the cross and lynching tree can mutually inform one another and explain how events of trauma and injustice can still inspire hope for the African American community.” -- Christianity Today

"Once again James Cone demonstrates why he is indispensable as an interpreter of faith, race, and the American experience." —Bill Moyers 

"James Cone is a world-historical figure in twentieth- century Christian theology. The Cross and the Lynching Tree is a powerful and painful song for hope in our dance with mortality—a song Cone courageously has led for over forty years!"—Cornel West

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