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The Intertwining Of Christianity And Slavery

George Washington believed in God and owned slaves.

Racism is a hot topic in our times (as if it ever really cooled down).  And a historical perspective helps us better understand the very concept of race. 

Katharine Gerbner provides such a perspective in her book Christian Slavery: Conversion and Race in the Protestant Atlantic World

Gerbner details the efforts to give Christianity to African slaves brought across the Atlantic, and how a shared religion brought about some ethical gymnastics: how can a Christian person maintain bondage over a fellow Christian? 

Slaveholders, slaves, and missionaries are all followed in the book.  The author joins us to unfold this dark chapter in human history. 

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Geoffrey Riley is a graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism and has hosted the Jefferson Exchange on JPR since 2009. He's been a broadcaster in the Rogue Valley for more than 35 years, working in both television and radio.