Cover

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Title, Copyright Page

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Contents

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pp. vii-viii

Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-x

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A Note on Illustrations and Endnotes

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pp. xi-xiv

This book includes references to maps (in chapter 1) and to paintings and other illustrations (in chapter 3) that are best viewed in color. Because illustrations included in this book had to be reproduced in black and white, I have created an accompanying website...

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Introduction: What Is the Soul of Man?

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pp. 1-5

When the pioneering gospel blues slide guitarist Blind Willie Johnson recorded “What Is the Soul of Man?” for Columbia records in the late 1920s, he challenged listeners to ponder a question central to the religious experience. The Texan used his growling voice to pose...

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Chapter One: Moses, Jesus, Absalom, and the Trickster: Narratives of the Evangelical South

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pp. 6-53

When, how, and why did the South become the Bible Belt? And why are the states considered the Bible Belt also so closely associated with high rates of violence, incarceration, divorce, alcoholism, obesity, and infant mortality? Grappling with these two questions...

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Chapter Two: “‘Because I Was a Master’”: Religion, Race, and Southern Ideas of Freedom

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pp. 54-95

Charles Colcock Jones, a Presbyterian planter and minister in the low country of Georgia, scorned slavery when younger but eventually emerged as the most effective advocate for the mission to the slaves in the 1830s. His complex relations with his large family and...

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Chapter Three: Suffering Saint: Jesus in the South

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pp. 96-158

As perfectly portrayed by Robert Duvall, the character Sonny in the film The Apostle stands as one of the most memorable creations of the cinematic history of American religion. A Holiness minister of a biracial church in a southeastern Texas city, Duvall’s Sonny...

Notes

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pp. 159-172

Index

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pp. 173-182

Further Reading

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