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Paul Harvey Responds to Edward Blum's review of _Freedom's Coming: Religious Culture and the Shaping of the South from the Civil War through the Civil Rights Era_ My thanks to Edward Blum for his extraordinarily generous review, and for giving a fair and thorough summary and analysis of my major points. I am truly grateful, particularly given my great respect for Blum's own work. I also appreciate the thoughtful and stimulating critique which is provided, and I hope to use this opportunity to advance the discussion in a way that other H-South subscribers can join the thread. Let me address a couple of smaller issues first, and then extend the discussion to Blum's broader critique of my treatment of white supremacist theology. First, I felt I had incorporated a discussion (largely drawing from Glenda Gilmore and others) of why "women tended to be more willing to cooperate interracially than men," but I suppose readers can decide for themselves whether that discussion is adequate. I remain more or less satisfied with it as it is. Secondly, and more interestingly, Blum wonders--quite properly--why I paid relatively little attention to certain "paramount southern cultural movements," such as the Scopes Trial. In this case, my material on controversies over evolution are contained mostly in chapter two, in the section on southern progressivism, and a bit in chapter five, which discusses the history of southern religious conservatism. At both points, I chose largely to ignore the Scopes Trial, although I certainly discussed the issues raised by evolution within the context of southern religious thought. My approach to the issue has been informed very much by Charles Israel's work _Before Scopes,_ as well as by Randall Hall's excellent biography of William Louis Poteat, the Baptist biology professor and later president of Wake Forest who has long been a hero for exponents of free thought in the South, but more lately has come under scrutiny for his sympathy with eugenics (certainly not an uncommon view among progressives of that era). Thus, for the purposes of my book, I considered it most important to understand the response to various forms of modernism by southern religious progressives (in chapter two) and later by southern religious conservatives (in chapter five). In the process of creating southern fundamentalism, the latter laid the groundwork for later attacks on desegregation as contrary to God's divine command. The Scopes Trial was certainly of paramount significance for many reasons. When I was writing _Freedom's Coming,_ I could not then see that a discussion of it was especially relevant to the main themes that I wanted to pursue--those being racism, racial interchange, and interracialism in southern religious history. Thus, I chose to pass over it except for a glancing reference. I wish now I could take that choice back and rewrite part of chapter two. I thought I did not have anything of significance to say about Scopes that had not been covered expertly by Edward Larson, Charles Israel, and many others. Thus I pretty much decided to cede the ground to them. Since completing the book, however, I have decided this choice was a mistake--and thus Blum's criticism is well-taken here. In particular, Jeffrey Moran's piece in the _Journal of American History_ ("Reading Race in the Scopes Trial") showed me exactly what I could not see for myself, that is, how to incorporate a media spectacle such as Scopes into my broader discussion of religion and race in the South and in African-American religious life. Moran documents the response of African-American church people to the evolution controversy and to Scopes, and thus sheds light on a subject that I wish I had taken up myself. As liberal Baptists have been known to say, mea culpa on that point, and a reminder that, no matter how diligently we may research, we always have blind spots and are in need of historical grace. I chose not to research this subject with any persistence, and the book suffers for it now. Finally, there are Blum's interesting and very important points on my approach to the first theme of the book, theological racism. He properly suggests that it can be called "white supremacist theology," a phrase (or something close to it) that I do use at a few points. Blum then sketches a quick examination of how this kind of theology "connected whiteness with godliness and blackness with ungodliness in ways that sanctified whites' activities and damned people of color as subhuman." Let me defend myself just a little bit by pointing to an article of mine which discusses that very point in much greater detail than I undertook in the book: "'A Servant of Servants Shall He Be': Religion and the Creation of Blackness," published in an anthology entitled _Religion, Race, and the Creation of Race and Ethnicity_, ed. Craig Prentiss (New York University Press, 2003). But of course Blum can only be responsible for what is in the book itself, so let me undertake a response to his points there. First, I do not agree, fully, that "theological racism" always necessarily constituted relegating non-whites to the role of sub-human. There is plenty of evidence for a tradition of southern theology which exalted hierarchy over equality without invoking racist notions of polygenesis. There are, in addition, specific theological traditions that invoke scientific racism as well as theological exegeses of the "son of Ham" school. Both of these receive considerable attention in chapter one. But I was, and remain, most interested in the theology that defends racist social structures through invoking conservative notions of social hierarchy, as I believe it is that tradition which remained most evident through the twentieth century and most evidently influenced prosegregationist thought. Blum also suggests that I "overlooked the roots of black liberation theology that were in the soil" of the South. I do wish I had spent more pages covering this and fewer pages discussing the white progressives who have received considerable and probably excessive attention in the literature--but it is not true that I "overlooked" it. Any book such as mine that discusses at length figures such as Henry McNeal Turner--following the course of his life and thought from superstar Methodist preacher, to AME organizer extraordinaire, to black theologian and advocate of African emigration--necessarily is tracing at least one root of black liberation theology. Further, one entire section of chapter one follows the course of black religious responses to the rise of Jim Crow and racial violence in the late nineteenth century, and some of those responses show a clear relationship to at least a proto-liberationist theology. Beyond that point, we may have just a difference of views on what historical subjects on which to focus attention. I made a conscious choice to focus not on the superstars of African-American life--which is why I did not include the DuBois and Langston Hughes selections mentioned by Blum--but to carefully consider instead the lives of workaday church people and ministers in an age of degradation and terror. "Liberation theology" was hardly an answer to lynching, at least in the short term in which people actually live their lives. Some of the figures discussed in my book are at least a little bit known, such as Henry Hugh Proctor of Atlanta. Others are relatively or completely unknown, even to scholars, and some (such as William Jefferson White, one founder of what later became Morehouse College) have been unjustly neglected and forgotten. I do wish I had remembered to consult Anne Moody again, with the excellent quote that Blum cites here; my bad, as we say on the basketball court. Blum's general point about the importance of the "battle over the racialization of the divine" is well-taken, and my book would have been better had I given this subject more critical attention and analysis than I did. As it happens, and unbeknownst to Blum, I have taken up such a project already for my next book, currently entitled _Religion, Race, and American Ideas of Freedom_, which, if I ever get around to actually writing it, will deal extensively with the very issues that Blum so suggestively raises in this review. Let me conclude by thanking Edward Blum again for a generous review and for his thoughtful and apt criticisms. Paul Harvey Department of History University of Colorado Colorado Springs