Soul Liberty: The Evolution of Black Religious Politics in Postemancipation

Time Period
1861 to 1876
Media Type
Video
Topics
Black History
Politics & Government
Religion
Presenter
Nicole Myers Turner

That churches are one of the most important cornerstones of black political organization is a commonplace. In her new history of African American Protestantism and American politics at the end of the Civil War, "Soul Liberty: The Evolution of Black Religious Politics in Postemancipation Virginia," Nicole Myers Turner challenges the idea of black churches as having always been politically engaged. In this Banner Lecture on August 13, 2020, Turner uses a wide-variety of new sources to reveal how freedpeople in Virginia adapted strategies for pursuing the freedom of their souls to worship as they saw fit—and to participate in society completely in the evolving landscape of emancipation.

Nicole Myers Turner is assistant professor of religious studies at Yale University. She is the author of Soul Liberty: The Evolution of Black Religious Politics in Postemancipation Virginia.