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Title page for ETD etd-06142019-110040

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Dean, Terrance
Author's Email Address mensempowerment@aol.com
URN etd-06142019-110040
Title Saved “Out,” Sanctified “Out,” and Souled “Out”: A Critical Analysis of Disgust and the Prophetic Immanence of James Baldwin’s Gender Sexual Politics
Degree PhD
Department Religion
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Victor Anderson Committee Chair
John McClure Committee Co-Chair
Herbert Marbury Committee Member
Hortense Spillers Committee Member
Tracy Sharpley-Whiting Committee Member
  • religious rhetoric
  • Adam Clayton Powell
  • Prophet Jones
  • Gilles Deleuze
  • prophetic immanence
  • disgust
  • Black Culture
  • African American Church
  • African American Studies
  • black church
  • black gay men
  • homosexuality
  • James Baldwin
Date of Defense 2019-05-21
Availability unrestricted
The “prophetic immanence” of James Baldwin’s racial and gender sexual politics as it relates to his experience with the black Christian church and the civil rights freedom struggle serves as symbol of hope, redemption and salvation for black gay men today and beyond. Baldwin’s racial and sexual identities were often contentious to the ideologies of heteronormativity, the Black Church, the black power movement, and white hegemonic powers. As a result, Baldwin’s racial and sexual identities help to provide insight into black gay men’s experiences with Black Church rhetoric of disgust for homosexuality. Black religious discourses on sexuality have made black gay men unwelcomed and ostracized “out” of their churches and so (Saved “Out”). Religious dogma, replete with messages of damnation, disinheritance, and separation from God lead black gay men feeling isolated from their churches, families and communities and hence (Sanctified “Out”). Being excluded morally informs and shapes their social lives and therefore (Souled “Out”). Thus, the discourse in black religious rhetoric on black sexuality impacts the spiritual and religious lives of black gay men such that their gender sexual politics is scrutinized within the Black Church and in many instances positions them out of the black Christian community. Baldwin represents as a metaphysical symbol, foregrounding his prophetic voice and messages of hope, freedom, redemption, liberation, and presence that lives on today. Prophetic immanence provides a unique way to think about the ongoing efficacy of Baldwin’s spirituality and spiritual awakening in relation to his race, gender, sex and sexuality. From this perspective, Baldwin’s language, writings, and words linger throughout the spiritual realm, never faltering or dissolving from the past but always already present, offering salvation, redemption, and reclamation of black gay men.
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