Thorndike Press

The Black Church: This Is Our Story, This Is Our Song

  • Henry Louis Gates
  • Offered By:
  • ISBN-10: 143288784X
  • ISBN-13: 9781432887841
  • DDC: 277.30089
  • Shipping Weight: 1.20 lbs ( .54 kgs)
  • 432 Pages | Hardcover
  • Published/Released June 2021



An Instant New York Times Bestseller

For the young Henry Louis Gates, Jr., growing up in a small, segregated West Virginia town, the church was his family and his community’s true center of gravity. In this book, Gates takes us from his own experience onto a journey across more than four hundred years and spanning the entire country. At road’s end, we emerge with a new understanding of the centrality of the Black church to the American story — as a cultural and political force, as the center of resistance to slavery and white supremacy, as an incubator of talent, and as a crucible for working through the community’s most important issues, down to today.


Customer Reviews

“[An] invaluable illumination of the many ways the Black church has been an ongoing epicenter of inspiration and action.”

— Booklist (starred)

“Through meticulous research and interviews . . . Gates paints a compelling portrait of the church as a source of ‘unfathomable resiliency’ for Black ancestors as well as the birthplace of so many distinctly African American aesthetic forms. . . . Powerful, poignant, and ultimately celebratory. Let the church say, ‘Amen!’”

— Kirkus Reviews (starred)

“Readers of American religious and African American history will not want to miss this title.”

— Library Journal

“A brisk and insightful look at how the Black church has succored generations of African Americans against white supremacy. . . . Punctuated by trenchant observations from Black historians and theologians, Gates’s crisp account places religious life at the center of the African American experience.”

— Publishers Weekly