Mary Beth Mathews, associate professor of religion at the University of Mary Washington, will discuss her new book, Doctrine and Race: African American Evangelicals and Fundamentalism between the Wars, on Wednesday, March 22, at 4 p.m. in Trinkle Hall, Room 242. The event is open to students, faculty, staff and the public.
By presenting African American Protestantism in the context of white Protestant fundamentalism, Mathews’ book demonstrates that African American Protestants were acutely aware of the manner in which white Christianity operated and how they could use that knowledge to justify social change, according to a description by The University of Alabama Press, the book’s publisher. Mathews’ study scrutinizes how African Americans constructed a definition of Christianity that had, at its core, an intrinsic belief in racial equality.
“The picture that emerges from this research creates a richer, more profound understanding of African American denominations as they struggled to contend with a white American society that saw them as inferior,” according to the publisher.
Mathews received a bachelor’s degree from The College of William and Mary and a master’s and doctorate from the University of Virginia. She also is the author of Rethinking Zion: How the Print Media Placed Fundamentalism in the South.