Title

James Baldwin’s Love as Religious Orientation

SMC Author

Joseph Drexler-Dreis

SMC Affiliated Work

1

Author Role

author

Status

Faculty

School

School of Liberal Arts

Department

Theology and Religious Studies

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2015

Publication Title

Journal of Africana Religions

Publisher/Venue

Penn State University Press

Description/Abstract

In this article, I use the concept of decolonial love to synthesize the religious and theological dimensions of James Baldwin's work. I argue that Baldwin's decolonial love functions as an ultimate orientation within his work, and that decolonial love is an orientation and a praxis that is a form of revelation. The revelatory capacity of decolonial love, which particularly comes out of the lived experiences on the underside of Western modernity, catalyzes what Baldwin refers to as salvation. I show this, first, by engaging Baldwin's decolonial love as a response to the way coloniality manifests itself in the United States and, second, by engaging Baldwin's response to coloniality—that is, decolonial love—as a religious response.

Keywords

Signification, Spiritual love, United States history, Theology, Jazz, Reality, Love, Theater, Religiosity, Black communities

Scholarly

yes

DOI

10.5325/jafrireli.3.3.0251

Volume

3

Issue

3

First Page

251

Last Page

278

Disciplines

Arts and Humanities | Religion | Religious Thought, Theology and Philosophy of Religion

Original Citation

Drexler-Dreis, Joseph. “James Baldwin’s Love as Religious Orientation,” Journal of Africana Religions. Penn State University Press. 3, no. 3 (2015): 251-78. https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.5325/jafrireli.3.3.0251

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