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James H. Cone

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Information about James H. Cone

Profile image of James H. Cone

Profession

Category:
ReligionMakers
Occupation(s):
Theologian

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Black
Favorite Food:
Salmon, Broccoli, Potatoes
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Paris, France
Favorite Quote:
Black Theology.

Birthplace

Born:
8/5/1938
Birth Location:
Fordyce, Arkansas

Profession

Category:
ReligionMakers
Occupation(s):
Theologian

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Black
Favorite Food:
Salmon, Broccoli, Potatoes
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Paris, France
Favorite Quote:
Black Theology.

Birthplace

Born:
8/5/1938
Birth Location:
Fordyce
See how James H. Cone is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Theologian James Hal Cone was born on August 5, 1938 in Fordyce, Arkansas. With his parents’ teachings on faith and his strong understanding of the value of an education, Cone began his formal training with a diploma from Ouachita County Training High School in 1954. That same year, he received his call to the ministry and became a pastor at age sixteen. After receiving his B.A. degree from Philander Smith College in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1958, he attended Garrett Theological Seminary in Evanston, Illinois where he received his B.D. degree in 1961. Continuing his studies, Cone received both his M.A. degree in 1963 and his Ph.D. in systematic theology in 1965 from Northwestern University.

Armed with a strong divinity education and serving as an ordained minister in the African Methodist Episcopal Church, Cone began his professional career as a professor at Philander Smith College, in 1966. He then taught at Adrian College in Michigan. Beginning in 1970, Cone joined the faculty of Union Theological Seminary in New York, where in 1977, he was awarded the distinguished Charles A. Briggs Chair in Systematic Theology. Cone also created a systematic Black theology. Cone created a Christian theology that was based on African American experience, history, and culture.

Among his numerous books are Black Theology and Black Power (1969), A Black Theology of Liberation (1970), For My People: Black Theology and the Black Church (1984), Martin & Malcolm & America: A Dream or Nightmare (1992), and Speaking the Truth: Ecumenism, Liberation and Black Theology (1999).

Cone passed away on April 28, 2018.

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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of James H. Cone's interview, session 1
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - James H. Cone lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - James H. Cone describes his mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - James H. Cone talks about his maternal uncle who ran away from home to study
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - James H. Cone talks about his maternal grandparents
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - James H. Cone describes his father's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - James H. Cone talks about his mother's emphasis on education and his siblings
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - James H. Cone recalls his father's lawsuit against Ouachita County Training School
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - James H. Cone talks about the demographics of Bearden, Arkansas
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - James H. Cone describes his childhood neighborhood in Bearden, Arkansas
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - James H. Cone describes how his church and community influenced him
  • Tape: 1 Story: 12 - James H. Cone recalls the community leaders of Bearden, Arkansas
  • Tape: 1 Story: 13 - James H. Cone recalls memories of the black community in Bearden
  • Tape: 1 Story: 14 - James H. Cone recalls race relations in Bearden, Arkansas
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - James H. Cone recalls attending first grade and his uncles in World War II
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - James H. Cone recalls his parents' lessons about segregation
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - James H. Cone recalls his admiration for black lawyers and ministers
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - James H. Cone recalls the Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka decision
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - James H. Cone remembers the murder of Emmett Till
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - James H. Cone recalls his calling to the ministry
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - James H. Cone recalls his decision to attend Shorter College in North Little Rock, Arkansas
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - James H. Cone recalls attending Philander Smith College before integration
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - James H. Cone recalls the integration of Little Rock's Central High School
  • Tape: 2 Story: 10 - James H. Cone talks about Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • Tape: 2 Story: 11 - James H. Cone talks about Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s philosophy
  • Tape: 2 Story: 12 - James H. Cone reflects upon the differences in white and black religious doctrines regarding segregation
  • Tape: 2 Story: 13 - James H. Cone recalls debating whether to interrupt a white Methodist church
  • Tape: 2 Story: 14 - James H. Cone recounts the history of the African Methodist Episcopal church
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - James H. Cone describes his experience of segregation in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - James H. Cone recalls Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s visit to Chicago
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - James H. Cone recalls his initial turn toward the black power movement
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - James H. Cone describes his interpretation of black power
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - James H. Cone compares the audiences of Martin Luther King., Jr. and Malcolm X
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - James H. Cone reflects upon the Nation of Islam and his own mis-education
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - James H. Cone describes his discovery of blackness in the gospel
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - James H. Cone talks about his theological writings on black power
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - James H. Cone describes the white clergy's support of the Civil Rights Movement
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - James H. Cone describes the emergence of the black power movement
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - James H. Cone reflects upon what led him to black theology
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - James H. Cone reflects upon the clergy's reception of his black theology
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - James H. Cone reflects upon his teachings on black theology
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - James H. Cone talks about teaching that Jesus Christ was a person of color
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - James H. Cone reflects upon the segregation of churches
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - James H. Cone reflects upon the demography of the Catholic church
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - James H. Cone talks about Minister Louis Farrakhan
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - James H. Cone narrates his photographs
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Slating of James H. Cone's interview, session 2
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - James H. Cone recalls teaching religion and philosophy at Philander Smith College
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - James H. Cone explains what precipitated the Watts riots of 1965
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - James H. Cone recalls the passage of the Voting Rights Act and the Watts riots
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - James H. Cone recalls his resignation from Philander Smith College
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - James H. Cone recalls how he founded black theology, pt. 1
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - James H. Cone recalls how he founded black theology, pt. 2
  • Tape: 6 Story: 1 - James H. Cone describes how he reconciled his race with his religion
  • Tape: 6 Story: 2 - James H. Cone describes his decision to maintain his role as a theologian
  • Tape: 6 Story: 3 - James H. Cone compares the struggles of Jesus Christ and the African American community
  • Tape: 6 Story: 4 - James H. Cone describes Martin Luther King's and the clergy's response to black theology
  • Tape: 6 Story: 5 - James H. Cone calls for white churches to denounce African Americans' oppression
  • Tape: 6 Story: 6 - James H. Cone reflects upon the role of the church in slavery
  • Tape: 6 Story: 7 - James H. Cone describes Malcolm X's point of view regarding Christianity
  • Tape: 6 Story: 8 - James H. Cone reflects upon how race affected interpretations of Christianity
  • Tape: 6 Story: 9 - James H. Cone talks about the misrepresentation of Jesus Christ's race
  • Tape: 6 Story: 10 - James H. Cone recalls being offered a position at Union Theological Seminary
  • Tape: 6 Story: 11 - James H. Cone recalls the African American community's response to his first book
  • Tape: 6 Story: 12 - James H. Cone describes his position as a black theologian and a Christian
  • Tape: 7 Story: 1 - James H. Cone reflects upon the acceptance and relevance of black theology
  • Tape: 7 Story: 2 - James H. Cone reflects upon the incompatibility of the ministry and politics
  • Tape: 7 Story: 3 - James H. Cone talks about contemporary religious incidents
  • Tape: 7 Story: 4 - James H. Cone reflects upon his career
  • Tape: 7 Story: 5 - James H. Cone describes the greatest achievement of the African American community
  • Tape: 7 Story: 6 - James H. Cone reflects upon the genocide in Darfur, Sudan
  • Tape: 7 Story: 7 - James H. Cone describes his hopes for the African American community