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Interview: Jemar Tisby Talks White Supremacy and Theological Heroes

Jemar Tisby is president of The Witness, a Black Christian Collective and co-host of the “Pass The Mic” podcast. Tisby is also a Ph.D. student in History at the University of Mississippi studying race, religion, and social movements in the 20th century. He takes on those subjects in his debut book, The Color of Compromise: The Truth about the American Church’s Complicity in Racism.

This is part two of Faithfully Magazine’s interview with Tisby, conducted by phone. It has been edited and condensed for clarity. You can read part one of the interview here.

From your research, have you found if there were Black Christians who were able to make change within predominantly-White denominations, or were most of them pushed out from these circles?

Typically, if you’re Black in a predominantly-White denomination, it’s on a conditional and provisional basis. So, you can sort of look throughout Christian history and in the sort of rare instances that there were biracial or interracial congregations or leadership, it’s always kind of been predicated on the minorities towing the party line on race and politics. To the extent that Black people spoke out more vociferously for Black civil rights and human rights, they got pushback, along with their allies.

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Timothy I. Cho
Timothy I. Cho
Timothy Isaiah Cho is Associate Editor at Faithfully Magazine. Timothy’s bylines have appeared in Religion News Service and Reformed Margins, and he has been interviewed for several podcasts including Truth’s Table and Gravity Leadership Podcast. He also runs a personal blog on Medium. He received a Master of Divinity from Westminster Seminary California and a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from U.C. Berkeley. Email: timothy.cho (at) faithfullymagazine.com

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