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Long, Michael G.

Long, Michael G.

PERSONAL:

Education: Geneva College, B.A. (summa cum laude); Gettysburg Seminary, M.Div.; Emory University, Ph.D.

ADDRESSES:

Office—Elizabethtown College, 1 Alpha Dr., Elizabethtown, PA 17022-2298. E-mail—[email protected]

CAREER:

Elizabethtown College, Elizabethtown, PA, associate professor of religious studies and peace and conflict studies.

WRITINGS:

Against Us, but for Us: Martin Luther King, Jr., and the State, Mercer University Press (Macon, GA), 2002.

Have the Time of Your Life: Living for God in Each Moment, Chalice Press (St. Louis, MO), 2003.

Martin Luther King, Jr., on Creative Living, Chalice Press (St. Louis, MO), 2004.

Billy Graham and the Beloved Community, Palgrave Macmillan (New York, NY), 2006.

(Editor, with Tracy Wenger Sadd) God and Country? Diverse Perspectives on Christianity and Patriotism, Palgrave Macmillan (New York, NY), 2007.

(Editor) First Class Citizenship: The Civil Rights Letters of Jackie Robinson, Times Books (New York, NY), 2007.

Resist! Christian Dissent for the 21st Century, Orbis Books (Maryknoll, NY), 2008.

(Editor) The Legacy of Billy Graham: Critical Reflections on America's Greatest Evangelist, Westminster John Knox Press (Louisville, KY), 2008.

SIDELIGHTS:

Elizabethtown College professor Michael G. Long is the author of studies about religion and its impact on modern life in America. His works include Against Us, but for Us: Martin Luther King, Jr., and the State, Have the Time of Your Life: Living for God in Each Moment, Martin Luther King, Jr., on Creative Living, Billy Graham and the Beloved Community, and Resist! Christian Dissent for the 21st Century. He is also the editor or coeditor of critical collections, including God and Country? Diverse Perspectives on Christianity and Patriotism, The Legacy of Billy Graham: Critical Reflections on America's Greatest Evangelist, and First Class Citizenship: The Civil Rights Letters of Jackie Robinson.

"Long's portrait of Martin Luther King, Jr., in Against Us, but for Us," wrote Frederick L. Downing in the Journal of Southern History, "provides an intellectual history of King's view of the state. Drawing on published materials from the King Papers Project and sources at Boston University and the King Center in Atlanta, Long depicts the development of King's thought from his formative years" through his civil rights career. Long shows that King's thought about the state remained more or less the same through his lifetime, and that he routinely adopted ideas for use in his theory of resistance. Most important, however, King recognized that the state held within itself the potential for both good and evil: as a work of human hands the state was inherently flawed, but it was capable of being used by God as a tool to advance the redemption of mankind. "In the last years of his life," Long wrote in Against Us, but for Us, "King sought to overcome barriers to human freedom by demanding that the state institutionalize nothing less than a revolution of values."

Billy Graham and the Beloved Community is a reassessment of the place of America's most beloved evangelist in modern society. "Contrary to those who underscore Graham's positive contribution to race relations in Cold War America," Darren Dochuk declared in the Journal of Church and State, "Long emphasizes instead" the ways in which the preacher's political conservatism blocked the advancement of racial equality. "By seeking a prophetic stance outside the mainstream," Dochuk concluded, "Long thus accomplishes what he set out to do: infuse the burgeoning field of Graham scholarship with an edginess that might incite new, rigorous debate."

Jackie Robinson is best remembered today for his role in breaking through the color barrier in major league baseball, but he was also an active civil rights leader who corresponded extensively during the 1950s and 1960s with major figures across the political spectrum, ranging from Malcolm X to Barry Goldwater and Richard Nixon. First Class Citizenship is Long's presentation of Robinson's letters, "a narrative of the wider black freedom movement," explained Jim Hahn in Library Journal, "featuring Robinson as our guide, commentator, and unrepentant conscience." For such an important figure in the struggle for racial equality, Robinson occupied a curious spot in the political spectrum. He supported Nixon in the 1960 presidential election (although he later reconciled with both John Kennedy and Robert Kennedy) and he had a prickly relationship with some black civil rights leaders, including Martin Luther King, Jr., and Malcolm X. "He generally supported the war in Vietnam, where his son was wounded in action," a Kirkus Reviews contributor noted, "and wrote a long letter chiding Martin Luther King Jr., for his anti-war position." The selections in First Class Citizenship, a Publishers Weekly writer stated, reflect Robinson's unrealized desire "to rationalize the schism between his equal rights fantasies and the reality of a tarnished American dream."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

BOOKS

Long, Michael G., Against Us, but for Us: Martin Luther King, Jr., and the State, Mercer University Press (Macon, GA), 2002.

PERIODICALS

Choice: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries, April 1, 2007, L.H. Hoyle, review of Billy Graham and the Beloved Community, p. 1357.

Journal of Church and State, June 22, 2007, Darren Dochuk, review of Billy Graham and the Beloved Community, p. 579.

Journal of Southern History, November 1, 2003, Frederick L. Downing, review of Against Us, but for Us, p. 988.

Kirkus Reviews, August 15, 2007, review of First Class Citizenship: The Civil Rights Letters of Jackie Robinson.

Library Journal, November 1, 2007, Jim Hahn, review of First Class Citizenship, p. 81.

Prairie Schooner, December 22, 2002, review of Against Us, but for Us, p. 671.

Publishers Weekly, August 13, 2007, review of First Class Citizenship, p. 54.

ONLINE

Elizabethtown College Web site,http://users.etown.edu/ (August 16, 2008), author profile.

Macmillan Web site,http://us.macmillan.com/ (August 16, 2008), author profile.

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