Religion in

REL 419.001 Slave Religion in the United States

Dr. Merinda Simmons

Office: 204 Manly Hall
Office Phone: 348-9911
Office Hour: to be announced
Course: TR 2:00-3:15
Location: 210 Manly Hall


About Online Readings

Some course readings are placed in a "secure" folder; you can only access these PDF files (Portable Document Format, that can be opened with the free Adobe Reader) by clicking each link and then entering your Bama User Name and Password. If you have difficulty accessing these readings, contact the instructor by email.

If you have forgotten your Bama ID, but know your Campus Wide ID (CWID), then go here.


When scholars talk about social organization in the U.S. during the 18th and 19th centuries many of them invoke the category "slave religion," which derives from the work of scholars in African American Studies during the 1960s and 70s, when the field was still very new. Students in this course will examine the ways in which that category functioned for scholars then and how/why it continues to appear in academic work today. We will also think through some of the limitations of the approaches to so-called slave religion. W


Spring 2016 (PDF)

Books (required)

Bayart, Jean-Francois
The Illusion of Cultural Identity
University of Chicago Press, 2005
ISBN: 978-0226039626

Raboteau, Albert
Slave Religion: The Invisible Institution in the American South
Oxford University Press, 2004
ISBN: 978-0195174120

Sobel, Mechal
Trabelin' On: The slave Journey to an Afro-Baptist Faith
Princeton University Press, 1988
ISBN: 978-0691006031

Brian Ward, Martyn Bone, and William A. Links (eds.)
The American South and the Atlantic World
University of Florida Press, 2015
ISBN: 978-0813061382

Online Readings (all PDFs)

All online readings can be found in
a folder on UABox. The link will be
provided by the professor.