Racialigious? [Series Introduction – Racialigious]

by Latoya Peterson

I’ve been fascinated by religion most of my life.

This is probably because I wasn’t raised with one.

When I say this, people – particularly other black people – tend to hear what I say and interpret it as “lapsed Christian.” As in, a girl who used to go to church and doesn’t go anymore.

Before the age of 21, I can count how many times I’ve been to church on one hand. With fingers left over. All my knowledge of Christianity comes from what my friends tell me and pop culture. And my knowledge of Judaism. And atheism. And any other religious belief system or lack thereof.

So, over time, I think I came to like listening to stories about religion and why people choose their specific belief systems. It’s interesting to listen to the reason for belief (or non-belief) and the battles to fight misconceptions. It’s even more interesting when analyzing the effect of race, gender, and class on religious practice and religious perception.

In launching Racialigious, we hope to explore where race (among other things) intersects with religious practice and belief.

Submissions welcome.