"How can the dialogue between professional black theologians and other members of the African American churches be strengthened so that it becomes clear that Black Theology is rooted in the faith of the church and that the faith of the church is given intellectual clarity and expression in Black Theology?"
It is with this question twenty years ago that We Have Been Believers ignited fresh, energetic inquiry into the theology of the African American Christian tradition, its history, practice and its theology. This work by Dr. James H. Evans,Professor of Systematic Theology, has become a seminal text; James H. Cone of Union Theological Seminary wrote that it is "useful for both the church and the academy. I recommend it highly."
Last month, the 20th Anniversary Edition was published by Fortress Press.
Edited and introduced by Stephen G. Ray Jr., it includes three new essays that identify the value of the book for womanist, evangelical and Black Church audiences. The new edition also concludes with an afterword by the author himself.
"[...] Evans resists the dominant narrative of American religious life that the African American Christian faith was wholly a creature of slavery and therefore only derivative of EuroAmerican Christian practice."
- Prof. Stephen G. Ray, "Forward to the Second Edition," We Have Been Believers
Dr. Evans is currently preparing to take a sabbatical next term, where he will be preparing a work concerning a theological approach to forgiveness. He is also the author of We Shall All Be Changed (1997),Modern Christian Thought: The Twentieth Century (2nd edition, 2006) and Playing: Christian Explorations of Daily Living (2010), all available from Fortress Press. You can purchase a copy of We Have Been Believers (20th Anniversary Edition) here.