Academic journal article Theological Studies

Hope Sings, So Beautiful: Graced Encounters across the Color Line

Academic journal article Theological Studies

Hope Sings, So Beautiful: Graced Encounters across the Color Line

Article excerpt

Hope Sings, So Beautiful: Graced Encounters across the Color Line. By Christopher Pramuk. Collegeville, MN: Liturgical, 2013. Pp. xxv + 201. $19.95.

Pramuk's book is an experiment in navigating the color line through a methodical interdisciplinary approach. This is not a traditional academic work. P. explores white racism and cross-racial encounters through chapter-length vignettes that are loosely focused on a theme, including "awakenings," "streets," "crucifixions," and "song circles." The sources that give life to these vignettes range from black Catholic theology and critical race theory to the music of Stevie Wonder and Billie Holiday, to the writings of mystics Howard Thurman, Etty Hillesum, and Thomas Merton, to P.'s own experiences in cross-racial relationships and within his own "white habitus." P. also includes a variety of photographs and other artwork as points of reflection for each chapter. These vignettes are seeds of contemplation meant to interrogate white Catholic theological imaginations through a theology of grace that "interrupts" and reorients them to the presence and movement of God's Spirit. P. is offering a method for truly seeing the racialized world in all its sufferings, struggles, and joys.

Since this book is experimental, not surprisingly a few of P. …

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