Baldwin, Lewis V. 1949–
Baldwin, Lewis V. 1949–
PERSONAL: Born September 17, 1949, in Camden, AL; son of L.V. (a minister) and Flora (a homemaker; maiden name, Bell) Baldwin; married Jacqueline L. Laws (a state auditor), September 29, 1979. Education: Talladega College, B.A., 1971; Colgate-Rochester Divinity School/Bexler Hall/Crozer Theological Seminaries, M.A., 1973, M.Div., 1975; Northwestern University, Ph.D., 1980. Religion: National Baptist.
ADDRESSES: Home—651 Harpeth Band Dr., Nashville, TN 37221. Office—Department of Religious Studies, Vanderbilt University, VU Box #351585, 2301 Vanderbilt Pl., Nashville, TN 37235-1585. E-mail—[email protected]
CAREER: Theologian, educator, and writer. College of Wooster, Wooster, OH, assistant professor of religion, 1981–82; Colgate University, Hamilton, NY, assistant professor of philosophy and religion, 1982–84; Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN, assistant professor, 1984–90, from associate professor of religious studies to professor of religious studies and director of African American Studies, 1990–; American Baptist College, Nashville, TN, adjunct professor, 2003; Fisk University, adjunct professor, 2004–06. Southern Poverty Law Center, Montgomery, AL, contributing member.
MEMBER: American Academy of Religion, Society for the Study of Black Religion, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Omega Psi Phi.
AWARDS, HONORS: Outstanding Young Man of America, U.S. Jaycees, 1975, 1980, 1985, and 1990; American Theological Library Association Award, 1981, for "Invisible" Strands in African Methodism; Midwest Book Achievement Award, Midwest Independent Publishers Association, 1992, for There Is a Balm in Gilead; inducted into Martin Luther King, Jr., International Collegium of Scholars, Morehouse College, 2004.
"Invisible" Strands in African Methodism: A History of the African Union Methodist Protestant and Union American Methodist Episcopal Churches, 1805–1980, Scarecrow (Metuchen, NJ), 1983.
The Mark of a Man: Peter Spencer and the African Union Methodist Tradition, University Press of America (Lanham, MD), 1987.
There Is a Balm in Gilead: The Cultural Roots of M.L. King, Jr., Fortress (Minneapolis, MN), 1991.
To Make the Wounded Whole: The Cultural Legacy of M.L. King, Jr., Fortress (Minneapolis, MN), 1991.
(With Aprille V. Woodson) Freedom Is Never Free: A Biographical Portrait of Edgar Daniel Nixon, Office of Minority Affairs, Tennessee General Assembly (Nashville, TN), 1992.
(With Amiri YaSin Al-Hadid) Between Cross and Crescent: Christian and Muslim Perspectives on Malcolm and Martin, University Press of Florida (Gainesville, FL), 2002.
(Editor and contributor) The Legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr.: The Boundaries of Law, Politics, and Religion, University of Notre Dame (Notre Dame, IN), 2002.
Plenty Good Room. Student: A Bible Study Based on African American Spirituals, Abingdon Press (Nashville, TN), 2002.
Also author of numerous articles for journals and periodicals.
WORK IN PROGRESS: In a Single Garment of Destiny: Martin Luther King, Jr., and the Globalization of an Ethical Ideal; Who is Their God: Images of the Church in the Mind of Martin Luther King, Jr.; The Word Made Flesh: The Bible as a Source for Martin Luther King, Jr.; A Drum Major for Justice: Essays in Honor of Martin Luther King, Jr.; The World is a Shaking: Martin Luther King, Jr., Africa, and Global Justice; The Harmonies of Liberty: Malcolm X and the Black Nationalist Tradition; God of Our Silent Tears: Sermons from the Depths of the Human Spirit; Slave Thought: The Contours of a Folk Theology; In the Backwaters of African Methodism: Small Black Methodist Denominations, 1805–1990; Standing in John's Shoes: The Black Preacher and the Folk Sermon; and The World as Parish: John Wesley and the Oppressed.
SIDELIGHTS: Lewis V. Baldwin has written extensively about African-American culture and life, including several books focusing on Martin Luther King, Jr., and his philosophies. For example, in Toward the Beloved Community: Martin Luther King Jr. and South Africa Baldwin writes about the influence of King on the South African struggle against apartheid. Between Cross and Crescent: Christian and Muslim Perspectives on Malcolm and Martin, which Baldwin wrote with Amiri YaSin Al-Hadid, explores the different lives and philosophies of the noted Black Muslim leader Malcolm X and King. A Publishers Weekly contributor observed that the authors "offer refreshing biographical insights based on exhaustive research." Gary P. Gillum, writing in the Library Journal, commented that the volume "mostly resolves the creative tension between those leaders' philosophies."
Baldwin edited and contributed to The Legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr.: The Boundaries of Law, Politics, and Religion. The book includes several essays that delve into King's philosophies concerning the relationship between religion, civil rights, and democratic politics. Writing in the Library Journal, Thomas J. Davis noted that the book shows that "surprising, unplumbed dimensions [of King's philosophies] remain to be explored." Journal of Southern Religion Reviews contributor Sylvester Johnson wrote: "This text portends a unique contribution to understanding King's legacy and delivers finely."
Baldwin once told CA: "My work as a scholar has been influenced and motivated largely by my parents and Doctors Lucius M. Tobin and Sterling Stuckey, my mentors. From these persons, I developed the view that my life as an African-American should be devoted to scholarly examinations of African-American religious life and culture. Such a task, in my view, is important if Americans are to gain a full understanding of the many vital cultural elements that have gone into the shaping of our society."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Journal of Southern Religion Reviews, Volume 6, 2003, Sylvester Johnson, review of The Legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr.: The Boundaries of Law, Politics, and Religion.
Library Journal, April 1, 2002, Thomas J. Davis, review of The Legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr., p. 122; April 15, 2002, Gary P. Gillum, review of Between Cross and Crescent: Christian and Muslim Perspectives on Malcolm and Martin, p. 91.
New Oxford Review, June, 1997, Rebecca Ginsburg, review of Toward the Beloved Community: Martin Luther King Jr. and South Africa.
Publishers Weekly, March 18, 2002, review of Between Cross and Crescent, p. 98.
Vanderbilt University Web site, http://www.vanderbilt.edu/ (March 21, 2006), faculty profile of the author.