Hope and History: Why We Must Share the Story of the Movement

By Vincent Harding | Go to book overview

4
Fighting for Freedom
with Church Fans

To Know What Religion Means

My devotion to truth has drawn me into politics; and I can say without the slightest hesitation . . . that those who say that religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion means.

— Mohandas K. Gandhi1

After decades of shunning classroom discussion of religion, fearing that it was too divisive a subject or that church-state separation might be breached, many American public schools are now moving to incorporate it into their curriculums.

The change results largely from a sentiment that schools have too long ignored religion as a force in American and world culture, and signs of it are far-flung.

New York Times, March 19, 19892

For those of us who seek to anchor our teaching in the daily realities of the modern world, certain harsh encounters are difficult (and undesirable) to avoid. When we call the attention of our students to the possible presence of profound truths just beneath the surface of mundane events, none of us can escape the many times when great light, sometimes terrible beauty, is

-75-

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Hope and History: Why We Must Share the Story of the Movement
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Foreword ix
  • Introduction - Moving beyond the Boundaries 1
  • 1 - Signs . . . Signs . . . Turn Visible Again 13
  • 2 - Advanced Ideas about Democracy 26
  • 3 - More Power Than We Know 56
  • 4 - Fighting for Freedom with Church Fans 75
  • 5 - God's Appeal to This Age" 91
  • 6 - Gifts of the Black Movement 105
  • 7 - Poets, Musicians, and Magicians 126
  • 8 - Doing the Right Thing in Mississippi and Brooklyn 154
  • 9 - In Search of the World 166
  • 10 - Is America Possible? 177
  • 11 - One Final, Soaring Hope 190
  • 12 - Letters to Teachers in Religious Communities and Institutions 201
  • Acknowledgments 229
  • Notes 235
  • Index of Names and Titles 245
  • About the Author *
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