Notes of a Native Daughter: Testifying in Theological Education

Keri Day. Eerdmans, $19.99 trade paper (176p) ISBN 978-0-80287-882-3
Princeton Theological Seminary professor Day (The Black Church) provides an incisive and hopeful account of theological education’s ongoing struggle with systemic racism. Day paints a sobering portrait of a white, male-centric, and heteronormative academy riddled with systemic racism, cultural complacency, and self-righteous reactionism. Day confronts the central paradox of theological education for a Black person—“that although it has provided liberatory contexts for theological thought and praxis, it has simultaneously been a center of profound exclusion”—and introduces readers to the personal and professional ambiguities of academic life as a minority. For Day, early Pentecostal movements (such as the Los Angeles Azusa Street revival of the early 1900s, an ongoing public worship service that captured a “revolutionary intimacy across differences”) offer concrete examples of how “to imagine and live into transgressive communities in response to the racist, hetero-patriarchal, and classist status quo.” In contrast to the present “economy of fear” dominating faith communities, which exploits vulnerability and precludes “moments of radical intimacy and belonging,” Day suggests “economies of desire” that merge “Pentecostal worship with critical, creative theology for marginalized people” and enable the possibility of “intimacy and belonging” through radical vulnerability. Theological educators, administrators, and students will find much to ponder in this trenchant volume. (June)
Reviewed on : 04/12/2021
Release date: 06/01/2021
Genre: Religion
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