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A Quaker View of Law, Conflict Resolution, and Legal Reform
A Quaker lawyer looks at Friends’ relationship with the American legal system and at Friends’ legal ethics. George Fox, founder of the Religious Society of Friends, admonished his followers against “going to law.” In this fascinating, wide-ranging book, a Quaker lawyer explores the relationship between Quakers and the American legal system and discusses Friends’ legal ethics. A highly influential group in the US both for their spiritual ideals of harmony, equality and truth-telling and for their activism on many causes including abolition and opposition to war, Quakers have had many noteworthy interactions with the law. Nancy Black Sagafi-nejad sketches the history and beliefs of the early Quakers in England and America, then goes on to look at important twentieth century constitutional law cases involving Quakers, many involving civil rights issues. Sagafi-nejad’s survey of 100 Quaker lawyers shows them to be at odds with the adversarial system and highlights a legal practice which must balance truth-telling and zealous advocacy. The Quaker development of extra-legal dispute resolution to solve debates amongst Friends is discussed along with a look at the possible future of mediation.
The Society of Friends and Black Education in Arkansas
In 1864 Alida and Calvin Clark, two abolitionist members of the Religious Society of Friends from Indiana, went on a mission trip to Helena, Arkansas. The Clarks had come to render temporary relief to displaced war orphans but instead found a lifelong calling. During their time in Arkansas, they started the school that became Southland College, which was the first institution of higher education for blacks west of the Mississippi, and they set up the first predominately black monthly meeting of the Religious Society of Friends in North America. Their progressive racial vision was continued by a succession of midwestern Quakers willing to endure the primitive conditions and social isolation of their work and to overcome the persistent challenges of economic adversity, social strife, and natural disaster. Southland’s survival through six difficult and sometimes dangerous decades reflects both the continuing missionary zeal of the Clarks and their successors as well as the dedication of the black Arkansans who sought dignity and hope at a time when these were rare commodities for African Americans in Arkansas.
The recent pirate activities on the horn of Africa have sparked interest in a phenomenon which in the years of yore characterised the high seas i.e. hostage taking. Combating this ill is the primary objective of the present treatise. Through his autobiographical narrative, The Fighting Sailor Turn'd Peaceable Christian, Thomas Lurting (1632-1713) distinguishes himself as one of the emblematic defendants of the early Quaker ideals for International Peace. In this treatise Lurting takes the fight for these ideals to the maritime scene. Most of the narrative takes place on board the Bristol Frigot, ship on board of which he was convinced. Despite staunch opposition facing the rise of Quakerism in the maritime milieu, which at the time was characterised by the spirit of belligerence, the determination of Quakers to die for their convictions, their pacific resistance ended up appealing to many a seaman who became convinced also. Numerous warring and fighting scenes constitute the ingredients for Lurting's plot development. And most especially the "...True Account of George Pattison's Being Taken by the Turks; and How Redeemed by [...], Without Bloodshed, Putting the Turks on Shoar in their Own Country...." Lurting makes of this episode the turning point around which he articulates his spiritual journey to illustrate the very Quaker ideal for an everlasting universal brotherhood and pacifism. Thomas Lurting was born in 1632, probably in Ireland. But he spent his childhood in London where at the age of fourteen he was impressed and forcefully taken to war in Ireland where he spent roughly two years. Upon his return to London, he was turned over into the Bristol Frigot, one of the war vessels belonging to Admiral Blake's fleet. On board this same ship he became convinced of the evils of war and decided to quit warring for the merchant service. He was however impressed many a times into the navy. He published his spiritual autobiography, The Fighting Sailor Turn'd Peaceable Christian. in 1710. Three years later, he passed away on the 30th March 1713, at the age of 81 in London and was laid to rest at Burmondsey. Translated and edited with introductory notes by William F. NDI, (Ph.D.) in Languages, Literatures, Contemporary and Translation Studies. Author of numerous articles and book chapters on early Quakerism and its influence on contemporary ideas and mentalities, world peace and politics, literature in general and the autobiographical and epistolary genres in particular. He has held teaching positions at the Paris school of languages, the University of Queensland, the University of the Sunshine Coast and currently teaches at Deakin University in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
The Theology of the Mother of Quakerism
Margaret Fell and the End of Time offers an unprecedented interpretation of the life and theology of one of the central figures of the seventeenth-century Quaker movement. While Fell has been the subject of some historical research, until this book she had not been studied as a religious author or theologian in her own right. Taking her seriously as a prophetic and practical theologian, Sally Bruyneel systematically analyzes Fell’s writings on both Quaker and orthodox Christian subjects, ranging from the Inward Light to eschatology to the Trinity. In doing so she demonstrates that Fell was deeply influenced by Biblical apocalyptic literature and the strong eschatological expectations of her time—which became central to her work with the Jews, for her defense of the spirituality equality of women, and for her promotion of the Quaker testimony of peace.
Early Quaker Rhetoric
Studying the history of early Quaker preaching, Michael Graves uses careful rhetorical analysis to provide insights into Quaker theology and practice. Situating the movement within the intellectual context of early seventeenth century Europe, he explores both seminal preachers and lesser known figures who were nonetheless important rhetoricians. Through extant sermons he demonstrates that the early Quakers could be a vocal, even “revivalistic,” sect that sought to put into effect world-wide the moral, spiritual, and practical virtues of what they called “primitive Christianity.” Thus, Graves challenges the stereotypes of the early movement and shows the denomination to be theologically innovative and socially important. Well-researched and well-written, Preaching the Inward Light is a timely look backward to these spirited people.
Vol. 1 (1906) through current issue
Quaker History is a peer reviewed journal consisting of illuminating articles on Quaker (Religious Society of Friends) contributions to issues such as social justice, education, and literature. The journal also includes book and article reviews and is published by the Friends Historical Association.
The Quakers and the Abolitionist Dilemma, 1820-1865
Ryan P. Jordan explores the limits of religious dissent in antebellum America, and reminds us of the difficulties facing reformers who tried peacefully to end slavery. In the years before the Civil War, the Society of Friends opposed the abolitionist campaign for an immediate end to slavery and considered abolitionists within the church as heterodox radicals seeking to destroy civil and religious liberty. In response, many Quaker abolitionists began to build "comeouter" institutions where social and legal inequalities could be freely discussed, and where church members could fuse religious worship with social activism. The conflict between the Quakers and the Abolitionists highlights the dilemma of liberal religion within a slaveholding republic.