“An incisive account of Catholicism’s presence within the post-1960s genre of the neo-slave narrative and its long-standing history in the African-American literary tradition. . . . Salius’ work truly inaugurates a new sub-field in African-American literary criticism, one that reimagines a multi-disciplinary, trans-historical, and cross-genre approach to U.S. Catholicism and the literature of slavery.”—Christianity and Literature
“Well-written. . . . Provides heretofore unknown or unacknowledged insight into the presence and significance of Catholicism for these writers. . . . An important addition to the critical literature on ex-slave narratives. Salius has hopefully opened a new door that others will soon walk through and as such provides a challenge for those in Catholic and African American studies to explore this new and inviting path.”—American Catholic Studies
“An excellent model of the research and critical analyses that ought to inform future scholarship in African American literature and culture.”—Jerry W. Ward Jr., coeditor of The Cambridge History of African American Literature
“Brilliant and insightful. Fills a gap in the study of African American literature and religion, which has traditionally assumed a Protestant theological and cultural landscape as the ground for discussions of religion and spirituality among the enslaved. Adds to our knowledge of how religious tropes, archetypes, and theological claims inform readings of African American literary texts.”—Katherine Clay Bassard, editor of “Sketches of Slave Life” and “From Slave Cabin to the Pulpit “
“A fresh, insightful reading of the African American neo-slave narrative genre. Promises to revise our understanding of not only the religious ideologies that justified slavery but also the narratives through which African Americans continue to engage America’s traumatic history and envision their own redemptive salvation.”—Sheldon George, author of Trauma and Race: A Lacanian Study of African American Racial Identity
Erin Michael Salius is assistant dean of Metropolitan College and director of Summer Term at Boston University.
Publication of the paperback edition made possible by a Sustaining the Humanities through the American Rescue Plan grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.