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Congratulations to Aspen Institute's Religion and Racial Justice Collective

I’ve always thought that, if you convene diverse people over a shared interest, miracles happen. And one of the best things about this is that once the spark is lit, the endpoint can be almost anywhere. There is extensive sociological research about this, but it pretty much boils down to: diverse people + shared interests + structured convening = something wonderful and unexpected.

So it is with real joy this week that I saw this book out: Religious Perspectives on the Narratives of America: The Search for Just, Honest, Inclusive, and Forward-looking Tellings. This collected essays is a collaboration between the Aspen Institute Religion & Society Program’s Racial Justice and Religion Collective and the U.S. Baha’i Office of Public Affairs. 

It is an outcome that we never could have foreseen back in 2020, when the first germ of the Racial Justice and Religion Collective came into being under Zeenat Rahman's tenure.

Over what has now been years of convening, reconfiguration, and the building of relationships and partnerships, this initial spark has led to a collected essays that hopes to expand the overarching narrative of the United States of America and to shine a light on some of the multitude of particular narratives in this diverse nation. The American narrative, as vast as it is, is made up of all our many stories of joy and sorrow, of oppression and liberation, of growth together. These essays give a peak at some of those narratives less told. I very much look forward to reading through these essays, and am glad to share the work with you today. Many congratulations to Rev. Dr. Audrey Price for reconvening this group and leading the collective since 2023!!

For those of you in DC, there’s a book talk and launch on Monday, June 17 from 1-4 at the Aspen Office. Register today for what I’m sure will be a really fabulous event.


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