Theology/Ethics

Along This Way: The Autobiography of James Weldon Johnson

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The autobiography of the celebrated African American writer and civil rights activist

Published just four years before his death in 1938, James Weldon Johnson's autobiography is a fascinating portrait of an African American who broke the racial divide at a time when the Harlem Renaissance had not yet begun to usher in the civil rights movement. Not only an educator, lawyer, and diplomat, Johnson was also one of the most revered leaders of his time, going on to serve as the first black president of the NAACP (which had previously been run only by whites), as well as write the groundbreaking novel The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man. Beginning with his birth in Jacksonville, Florida, and detailing his education, his role in the Harlem Renaissance, and his later years as a professor and civil rights reformer, Along This Way is an inspiring classic of African American literature.

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

ISBN/SKU: 
9780143105176
Publication Date: 
2008-02-01
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Altars Where We Worship: The Religious Significance of Popular Culture

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$25.00

While a large percentage of Americans claim religious identity, the number of Americans attending traditional worship services has significantly declined in recent decades. Where, then, are Americans finding meaning in their lives, if not in the context of traditional religion? In this provocative study, the authors argue that the objects of our attention have become our god and fulfilling our desires has become our religion. They examine the religious dimensions of six specific aspects of American culture--body and sex, big business, entertainment, politics, sports, and science and technology--that function as "altars" where Americans gather to worship and produce meaning for their lives. The Altars Where We Worship shows how these secular altars provide resources for understanding the self, others, and the world itself. "For better or worse," the authors write, "we are faced with the reality that human experiences before these altars contain religious characteristics in common with experiences before more traditional altars." Readers will come away with a clearer understanding of what religion is after exploring the thoroughly religious aspects of popular culture in the United States.

ISBN/SKU: 
9780664235154
Publication Date: 
2016-11-04
0

Always among Us: Images of the Poor in Zwingli's Zurich

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In this elegantly written book, Lee Wandel discusses the relationship between the reform of poor relief and the Protestant Reformation in early sixteenth-century Zurich. In the introduction she traces the various ways that poverty has been evaluated, and its social and religious connotations, up to the sixteenth century. After providing a portrait of sixteenth-century Zurich, the author goes on to explore the discussion of the poor in various media of the town: the sermons and pamphlets of Huldrych Zwingli, who was preaching that the poor were the true images of God; printed images depicting Christ calling beggars and other poor folk to Him (these appeared on title pages of Zwingli's pamphlets); the language of legislation (in particular the poor ordinances of 1520 and 1525). By exploring each of these different "languages"--the words of Zwingli's sermons, the visual images of title page prints, and the language of legislation--Professor Wandel restores the complex perception of the poor in Reformation Zurich. In each, the poor were located within matrices of religious and social values and were seen as both economically dependent and symbolic within larger theological and ethical constructs.
ISBN/SKU: 
9780521390965
Publication Date: 
2015-03-30
0

Ambivalent Conquests: Maya and Spaniard in Yucatan, 1517-1570 (2nd ed.)

$28.00
In what is both a specific study of conversion in a corner of the Spanish Empire and a work with implications for the understanding of European domination and native resistance throughout the colonial world, Inga Clendinnen explores the intensifying conflict between competing and increasingly divergent Spanish visions of Yucatan and its destructive outcomes. In Ambivalent Conquests Clendinnen penetrates the thinking and feeling of the Mayan Indians in a detailed reconstruction of their assessment of the intruders. This new edition contains a preface by the author where she reflects upon the book's contribution in the past fifteen years. Inga Clendinnen is Emeritus scholar, LaTrobe University, Australia. Her books include the acclaimed Reading the Holocaust (Cambridge, 1999), named a Best Book of the Year by the New York Times Book Review, and Aztec: An Interpretation (Cambridge, 1995), and Tiger's Eye: A Memoir (Scribner, 2001).
ISBN/SKU: 
9780521527316
Publication Date: 
2003-02-10
0

America and Its Guns: A Theological Expose

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Synopsis: James Atwood contends that the thirty thousand gun deaths America suffers every year cannot be understood apart from our national myth that God has appointed America as "the trustee of the civilization of the world" and even "Christ's light to the nations." Because these purposes are noble, and we are supposedly a good and trustworthy people, violence is sometimes "required" and gives license to individuals to carry open or concealed weapons, which "save lives" and can even be "redemptive." Atwood, an avid hunter, cautions that an absolute trust in guns and violence morphs easily into idolatry. Having spent thirty-six years as a Presbyterian pastor fighting against the easy access to firearms, one of which took the life of a friend, he uses his unique experience and his biblical and theological understanding to graphically portray the impact guns have on our society. He documents how Americans have been deceived into believing that the tools of violence, whether they take the form of advanced military technology or a handgun in the bedside stand, will provide security. He closes with a wake-up call to the faith community, which he says is America's best hope to unmask the extremism of the Gun Empire. Endorsement: "Atwood knows that guns are not just weapons, but symbols, and not only symbols, but idols that demand enormous sacrifice in American lives. This book gets at both the depth and meaning of this on-going tragedy. As a gifted organizer and thinker, Atwood then unveils the inspiring theological bases of an awakening to gun violence [prevention] that has already begun in some cities and congregations." --Christian Iosso, Coordinator of Advisory Committee on Social Witness Policy "When it comes to tackling the plague of gun violence in the U.S., no one 'walks the walk' with more integrity than Atwood. He has devoted his life to saving lives from gun violence by increasing awareness and challenging popular myths about guns. He now gives us a much needed theological undergirding for our work to end the violence." --John W. Wimberly Jr., Pastor of Western Presbyterian Church "Gun violence destroys families everyday in America. Atwood presciently shows how our weak gun laws result from treating guns as if they were religious idols. By unpacking the theological significance of policies that allow for unfettered access to firearms, he makes a compelling argument that people of faith have a religious and moral duty to fight for stronger gun laws." --Joshua Horwitz, Executive Director of the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence "Atwood's fervent account of the multiple costs of gun violence and the need to restrain it is of urgent and timely importance. This book is a challenge to Christians to lead the way in unmasking the peculiar American obsession with guns. It illuminates the origins of that obsession and recounts a distressing record of statistics and broken laws, all in a compelling theological framework." --David Little, Harvard Divinity School "This is the book I've been waiting for. Atwood's analysis is deeply theological, and I hope it will bring conversations in our churches about idolatry, faithfulness, and the violence that has become so interwoven into our culture. Read this book for an exploration of your own acquiescence to the gun culture, and then study it with your book club or church group to begin planning the revolution that will stand up to the gun industry." --Rick Ufford-Chase, Executive Director of Presbyterian Peace Fellowship Author Biography: James E. Atwood is Pastor Emeritus of the Trinity Presbyterian Church of Arlington, Virginia, from which he retired in 1999. He lives in Springfield, Virginia. He is presently the Chairperson of Heeding God's Call of Greater Washington, a faith-based ecumenical movement that encourages gun shops to adopt a code of conduct that deters illegal purchasing and the trafficking of handguns.
ISBN/SKU: 
9781610978255
Publication Date: 
2012-06-01
0
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America and the Challenges of Religious Diversity

$29.95
ISBN/SKU: 
0520119767
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America At the Crossroads: Democracy Power and the Neoconservative Legacy

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Francis Fukuyama s criticism of the Iraq war put him at odds with neoconservative friends both within and outside the Bush administration. Here he explains how, in its decision to invade Iraq, the Bush administration failed in its stewardship of American foreign policy. First, the administration wrongly made preventive war the central tenet of its foreign policy. In addition, it badly misjudged the global reaction to its exercise of benevolent hegemony. And finally, it failed to appreciate the difficulties involved in large-scale social engineering, grossly underestimating the difficulties involved in establishing a successful democratic government in Iraq.
Fukuyama explores the contention by the Bush administration s critics that it had a neoconservative agenda that dictated its foreign policy during the president s first term. Providing a fascinating history of the varied strands of neoconservative thought since the 1930s, Fukuyama argues that the movement s legacy is a complex one that can be interpreted quite differently than it was after the end of the Cold War. Analyzing the Bush administration s miscalculations in responding to the postSeptember 11 challenge, Fukuyama proposes a new approach to American foreign policy through which such mistakes might be turned aroundone in which the positive aspects of the neoconservative legacy are joined with a more realistic view of the way American power can be used around the world."
ISBN/SKU: 
9780300113990
Publication Date: 
2006-03-01
0
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America's Experts: Race and the Fictions of Sociology

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During World War II, the rising visibility of anticolonial and antiracist movements exposed contradictions between the U.S. democratic mission in Europe and racist practices against people of color at home. Yet the professional success stories of people of color gave ideological support to the notion that liberal antiracism was spreading within the United States.

Challenging conventional accounts of U.S. ethnic literature rooted in 1960s and 1970s social movements, Cynthia H. Tolentino sees this literary work as emerging from a political climate in which arguments about the integration of racial minorities and the moral legitimacy of U.S. international leadership are intertwined. Probing how sociologists including Robert E. Park, Gunnar Myrdal, and Emory Bogardus situated Asian Americans, Filipinos, and African Americans as model citizens and problems, Tolentino contends that such studies served as a staging ground for writers of color to become narrators of racial identity, citizenship, and U.S. neocolonialism.

Tracing the literary engagements of Richard Wright, Carlos Bulosan, and Jade Snow Wong with the sociology of race, Tolentino assesses their works as critical expressions of class negotiation on the global stage and illuminates the significance of U.S. ethnic literature.

ISBN/SKU: 
9780816651115
Publication Date: 
2009-10-01
0

America's Original Sin: Racism, White Privilege, and the Bridge to a New America

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America's problem with race has deep roots, with the country's foundation tied to the near extermination of one race of people and the enslavement of another. Racism is truly our nation's original sin.

"It's time we right this unacceptable wrong," says bestselling author and leading Christian activist Jim Wallis. Fifty years ago, Wallis was driven away from his faith by a white church that considered dealing with racism to be taboo. His participation in the civil rights movement brought him back when he discovered a faith that commands racial justice. Yet as recent tragedies confirm, we continue to suffer from the legacy of racism. The old patterns of white privilege are colliding with the changing demographics of a diverse nation. The church has been slow to respond, and Sunday morning is still the most segregated hour of the week.

In America's Original Sin, Wallis offers a prophetic and deeply personal call to action in overcoming the racism so ingrained in American society. He speaks candidly to Christians--particularly white Christians--urging them to cross a new bridge toward racial justice and healing.

Whenever divided cultures and gridlocked power structures fail to end systemic sin, faith communities can help lead the way to grassroots change. Probing yet positive, biblically rooted yet highly practical, this book shows people of faith how they can work together to overcome the embedded racism in America, galvanizing a movement to cross the bridge to a multiracial church and a new America.

ISBN/SKU: 
9781587434006
Publication Date: 
2017-02-14
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America's Religious Wars: The Embattled Heart of Our Public Life

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How American conflicts about religion have always symbolized our foundational political values

When Americans fight about "religion," we are also fighting about our conflicting identities, interests, and commitments. Religion-talk has been a ready vehicle for these conflicts because it is built on enduring contradictions within our core political values. The Constitution treats religion as something to be confined behind a wall, but in public communications, the Framers treated religion as the foundation of the American republic. Ever since, Americans have translated disagreements on many other issues into an endless debate about the role of religion in our public life.

Built around a set of compelling narratives--George Washington's battle with Quaker pacifists; the fight of Mormons and Catholics for equality with Protestants; Teddy Roosevelt's concept of land versus the Lakota's concept; the creation-evolution controversy; and the struggle over sexuality--this book shows how religion, throughout American history, has symbolized, but never resolved, our deepest political questions.
ISBN/SKU: 
9780300213867
Publication Date: 
2019-06-04
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America's Spiritual Capital

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ISBN/SKU: 
9781587310379
Publication Date: 
2012-06-30
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American Dharma: Buddhism Beyond Modernity

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This illuminating account of contemporary American Buddhism shows the remarkable ways the tradition has changed over the past generation

The past couple of decades have witnessed Buddhist communities both continuing the modernization of Buddhism and questioning some of its limitations. In this fascinating portrait of a rapidly changing religious landscape, Ann Gleig illuminates the aspirations and struggles of younger North American Buddhists during a period she identifies as a distinct stage in the assimilation of Buddhism to the West. She observes both the emergence of new innovative forms of deinstitutionalized Buddhism that blur the boundaries between the religious and secular, and a revalorization of traditional elements of Buddhism, such as ethics and community, that were discarded in the modernization process.

Based on extensive ethnographic and textual research, the book ranges from mindfulness debates in the Vipassana network to the sex scandals in American Zen, while exploring issues around racial diversity and social justice, the impact of new technologies, and generational differences between baby boomer, Gen X, and millennial teachers.
ISBN/SKU: 
9780300215809
Publication Date: 
2019-02-26
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American Empire and the Commonwealth of God: A Political Economic Religious Statement

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$19.95

In this book, four distinguished scholars level a powerful critique of the rapid expansion of the emerging American empire and its oppressive and destructive political, military, and economic policies. Arguing that a global Pax Americana is internationally disastrous, the authors demonstrate how America's imperialism inevitably leads to rampant irreversible ecological devastation, expanding military force for imperialistic purposes, and a grossly inequitable distribution of goods--all leading to the diminished well-being of human communities.

ISBN/SKU: 
9780664230098
Publication Date: 
2006-05-17
0

American Grace: How Religion Divides and Unites Us

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$20.00
American Grace is "perhaps the most sweeping look yet at contemporary American religion. It lays out the broad trends of the past fifty years, assesses their sociological causes, and then does a bit of fortune-telling" (The Washington Post).

Unique among nations, America is deeply religious, religiously diverse, and remarkably tolerant. In recent decades, however, the nation's religious landscape has undergone several seismic shocks. American Grace is an authoritative, fascinating examination of what precipitated these changes and the role that religion plays in contemporary American society.

Although there is growing polarization between religious conservatives and secular liberals today, at the same time personal interfaith ties are strengthening. Interfaith marriage has increased, and religious identities have become more fluid. More people than ever are friendly with someone of a different faith or no faith at all. Putnam and Campbell show how this denser web of personal ties brings greater interfaith tolerance, despite the so-called culture wars.

Based on two of the most comprehensive surveys ever conducted on religion and public life in America (and with a new epilogue based on a third survey), American Grace is an indispensable book about American religious life, essential for understanding our nation today.

ISBN/SKU: 
9781416566731
Publication Date: 
2012-02-21
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American Indian Liberation: A Theology of Sovereignty

$22.00
Why Christian understandings of Jesus and God clash with American Indian worldviews. "Tink" Tinker of the Osage Nation describes the oppression suffered by American Indians since the arrival of European colonists, who brought a different worldview across the ocean and attempted to convert the native population to the religion they also imported. The methodology, language, and understandings of Christian beliefs of the colonists????????????????????????and the majority society since the colonial period????????????????????????have largely failed to Christianize the native population. Different conceptual frameworks and different understandings of terms made (and make) Christian doctrine particularly unappealing and at times incomprehensible to Indians.
ISBN/SKU: 
9781570758058
Publication Date: 
2008-08-30
0
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American Magnificat: Protestants on Mary of Guadalupe

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When Our Lady of Guadalupe appeared to Juan Diego at Tepeyac, she sent him to the bishop with the message that she desired a hermitage where all people would be welcomed and would experience her love. And yet, until recently, the message of Guadalupe has been limited to Catholics, particularly Mexicans and Mexican Americans. With this volume of essays, however, a variety of Protestant theologians engage the tradition surrounding Our Lady of Guadalupe to demonstrate that she has a place in Protestant churches. The multicultural dynamic of today's churches, Catholic and Protestant alike, means that cultural elements of people's faith cannot be dismissed. Rather, they are to be explored and contemplated, possibly embraced and integrated into the broader church life. By critically and thoughtfully engaging the Guadalupe story, the authors in this volume provide insights on how Our Lady can be welcomed into the prayer life and worship of Protestant communities.

With a foreword by Timothy Matovina and concluding reflection by Virgil Elizondo.

ISBN/SKU: 
9780814632598
Publication Date: 
2010-01-01
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American Paradox: Spiritual Hunger in an Age of Plenty

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$16.95
For Americans entering the twenty-first century, it is the best of times and the worst of times. Material wealth is at record levels, yet disturbing social problems reflect a deep spiritual poverty. In this compelling book, well-known social psychologist David G. Myers asks how this paradox has come to be and, more important, how we can spark social renewal and dream a new American dream.

Myers explores the research on social ills from the 1960s through the 1990s and concludes that the materialism and radical individualism of this period have cost us dearly, imperiling our children, corroding general civility, and diminishing our happiness. However, in the voices of public figures and ordinary citizens he now hears a spirit of optimism. The national dialogue is shifting--away from the expansion of personal rights and toward enhancement of communal civility, away from efforts to raise self-esteem and toward attempts to arouse social responsibility, away from "whose values?" and toward "our values." Myers analyzes in detail the research on educational and other programs that deal with social problems, explaining which seem to work and why. He then offers positive and well-reasoned advice, suggesting that a renewed social ecology for America will rest on policies that balance "me thinking" with "we thinking."

ISBN/SKU: 
9780300091205
Publication Date: 
2001-08-11
0
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American Protestant Ethics and the Legacy of H. Richard Niebuhr

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$25.00

In this careful analysis and evaluation of the monumental influence of Niebuhr, Werpehowski traces four streams that flow from Niebuhr's theology, particularly as it deals with ethics. In a tightly knit and comprehensive investigation of the work of four contemporary ethicists, important in their own right, Paul Ramsey, Stanley Hauerwas, James Gustafson, and Kathryn Tanner, Werpehowski explores how the legacy of Niebuhr has made an impact on their thought and work. He presents a clear, concise, nuanced, analytical criticism of the development of the four ethicist's construction of ethics-and does it in a way that interweaves and puts the four into a dialogue and conversation with Niebuhr and each other.

Addressing a number of substantive issues, including the viability of just war tradition and the relationship between "church" and "world," American Protestant Ethics and the Legacy of H. Richard Niebuhr demonstrates that Christian ethics operates within a set of polar tensions and that such "conversations" as are developed within need to be a part of moral discourse inside and between a variety of communities of faith.

ISBN/SKU: 
9780878403837
Publication Date: 
2002-11-20
0

American to the Backbone: The Life of James W. C. Pennington, the Fugitive Slave Who Became One of the First Black Abolitionists

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At the age of 19, scared and illiterate, James Pennington escaped from slavery in 1827 and soon became one of the leading voices against slavery prior to the Civil War. Just ten years after his escape, Pennington was ordained to the ministry of the Congregational Church after studying at Yale. Moving to Hartford, he became involved with the Amistad captives and founded the first African American mission society.

As he fought for equal rights in America, Pennington's voice was not limited to the preacher's pulpit. He wrote the first-ever "History of the Colored People" as well as a careful study of the moral basis for civil disobedience, which would be echoed decades later by Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr. More than a century before Rosa Parks took her monumental bus ride, Pennington challenged segregated seating in New York City street cars, for which he was beaten and arrested.

American to the Backbone brings to life this fascinating, forgotten pioneer, who helped lay the foundation for the contemporary civil rights revolution and inspire generations of future leaders.

ISBN/SKU: 
9781605983882
Publication Date: 
2012-12-27
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Americas' First Theologies: Early Sources of Post-Contact Indigenous Religion

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$99.00
The Theologia Indorum by Dominican friar Domingo de Vico was the first Christian theology written in the Americas. Made available in English translation for the first time, Americas' First Theologies presents a selection of exemplary sections from the Theologia Indorum that illustrate Friar Vico's doctrine of god, cosmogony, moral anthropology, understanding of natural law and biblical history, and constructive engagement with pre-Hispanic Maya religion. Rather than merely condemn the Maya religion, Vico appropriated local terms and images from Maya mythology and rituals that he thought could convey Christianity. His attempt at translating, if not reconfiguring, Christianity for a Maya readership required his mastery of not only numerous Mayan languages but also the highly poetic ceremonial rhetoric of many indigenous Mesoamerican peoples.

This book also includes translations of two other pastoral texts (parts of a songbook and a catechism) and eight early documents by K'iche' and Kaqchikel Maya authors who engaged the Theologia Indorum. These texts, written in Highland Mayan languages both by fellow Dominicans and by Highland Maya elites demonstrate the wider influence of Vico's ethnographic approach shared by a particular school of Dominicans. Altogether, The Americas' First Theologies provides a rich documentary case example of the translation, reception, and reaction to Christian thought in the indigenous Americas

ISBN/SKU: 
9780190678302
Publication Date: 
2017-08-01
0

Amnesty of Grace: Justification by Faith from a Latin American Perspective

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"This study explores the meaning of justification in the framework of Latin American theology of liberation, which is a particular way of doing theology welcomed by both Catholics and Protestants. In this theology, the poor, 'oppressed and believing, ' constitute the privileged locus of theology. That is to say, theology is done from their reality of oppression-liberation and their experience of God. Every great theological theme, every biblical reading, must be reexamined from that angle of vision." (from the Introduction, by Elsa Tamez)
ISBN/SKU: 
9780687009343
Publication Date: 
1993-01-19
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An Act of State: The Execution of Martin Luther King

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$23.00
The definitive account of Martin Luther King, Jr.'s assassination

On April 4, 1968, Martin Luther King was in Memphis to support a workers' strike. As night fell, army snipers took up position; military officers surveilled the scene from a nearby roof; and their accomplice, restaurant-owner Loyd Jowers, was ready to remove the murder weapon. When the dust had settled, King had been shot and a cleanup operation was in motion--James Earl Ray was framed, the crime scene was destroyed, and witnesses were killed. It would take William F. Pepper, attorney and friend of King, thirty years to get to the bottom of a conspiracy that changed the course of American history. In 1999, the King family, represented by the author, brought a civil action lawsuit against Loyd Jowers and other co-conspirators. Seventy witnesses set out the details of a plot that involved J. Edgar Hoover and the FBI, Richard Helms and the CIA, the US military, the Memphis police, and organized crime. The jury took an hour to find for the King family.

Now fifty years after MLK's execution, An Act of State demonstrates the bloody depths to which the US government will descend to repress a movement for change.

ISBN/SKU: 
9781786635976
Publication Date: 
2018-03-27
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Ancients and the Moderns: Rethinking Modernity

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$23.00
In this text, philosopher Stanley Rosen takes a new look at the "quarrel" that moderns have with the ancients, analyzing and comparing ancient philosophers and modern Continental and analytical thinkers from Plato, Descartes and Kant to Fichte, Nietzche and Rorty.
ISBN/SKU: 
9781587310249
Publication Date: 
2002-04-30
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Angels in the Wilderness: Young and Black in New Orleans and Beyond

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$20.00
Angels in the Wildness is a collection of stories about young African Americans in New Orleans, Louisiana, as well as several individuals and organizations that mentor young adults in the Crescent City. The purpose of the book is simply to pass on the stories of young people; stories that need to be told to inform and inspire us allblack and whitein New Orleans and beyond.
ISBN/SKU: 
9781946160034
Publication Date: 
2017-09-19
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Animal Rites: Liturgies of Animal Care

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$24.00
Christians believe that the logos is the source of all life, yet Christian worship remains unashamedly human-centric. The world of creation, and animals in particular, is almost invisible in our worship. The churches do not have the liturgical means of celebrating the life of animals, giving thanks for their companionship, praying for the relief of their suffering, or marking their death. This unique book provides a variety of liturgies that are animal-friendly and animal-inclusive. They include services in celebration of animal companionship, services for animal welfare, healing liturgies, new eucharistic prayers ""for the whole creation,"" and animal burial services. Underlying all these new forms is a serious theological purpose: to help us to draw deeper into the mystery of God's work in creation and to affirm other sentient beings as co-creatures with us. ""The commentary, thoughts, and prayers on this issue of animal care are a very necessary provision to help clergy and ministers understand and appreciate the theme of Christian responsibility for creation."" --The Most Reverend Alwyn Rice Jones, Archbishop of Wales "" . . . of an exceptionally high standard both in language and content."" --Bishop John Baker Andrew Linzey is Director of the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics and a member of the Faculty of Theology in the University of Oxford.
ISBN/SKU: 
9781498230964
Publication Date: 
2015-06-23
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