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Showing posts from October 6, 2012

Remembering James Forman who challenged churches that largely refused to listen

James Forman died in early 2005 in a hospice in Washington, DC. He was 76. Born in Chicago, he was one of the major figures in the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s.  To me he was also perhaps the pivotal figure in a career decision that I now am coming to see as my version of Nietzsche leaving his professorship to become in some respects an exile and a lone voice for an evolving understanding that could only have been the product of exile.How could Jim Forman have such influence? I never met him personally. I was around when he was around in Nashville in 1961. The documentary Eyes on The Prize has a brief shot of him in Selma, Alabama, -- the second, aborted march, the afternoon before the evening when James Reeb was killed. Standing behind Jim Forman in that documentary picture is me. One answer to the influence question is that Jim Forman was  not only a prominent Civil Rights activist and administrator  and a respected thinker.  He was also a a challenger of the American religio…