College of Arts and Sciences
Doctor of Philosophy in History (PhD)
Relationship, Christianity, Slavery
Smith, Decorie Lee, "The Relationship between Christianity and Slavery: An Examination of the Defense of Slavery within Christian Thought, Practices and Methodologies from 1619-1865" (2023). Doctoral Dissertations and Projects. 4495.
Slavery in the Unitred States was supported by individual Christians who skillfully mastered how to manipulate the Bible as justification for enslaving Africans and their descendates. Therefore, the examination of the relationship between Christianity and slavery within the United States and the greater western civilizations-explores the impact of Christian institutions on African Americans-investages the influence of Christianis relationship with slavery on all the descendants of enslaved African culture as the plural societies within this relationship’s functions. So far, two perspectives have emerged in the study of the existence of such an connectiuon. The first, which may be termed as “Proslavery Christians” examines the stance in which many slaveholders and prominent defenders of slavery accepted slavery in the broadest sense of the term. Their experiences and outlooks may best be seen in their commitment to reducing the value of African Americans while holding Christian morals. Therefore, their rejection of Africa and its people as significant offers justification for their desire to utilize Christianity to support their treatment of enslaved Africans and their descendants. Additionally, their willingness to justify the cruelty of the peculiar institution of slavery has defined the experiences of Africans whether enslaved or free. The second school of thought, a term just as broadly, “Antislavery Christians” sees enslaved Africans and their descendants as valuable believers in the faith that has endured one of the coldest hand of bondage and have been able to fashion themselves into a culture of believers nonetheless.