Becoming Like Creoles: Living and Leading at the Intersections of Injustice, Culture, and Religion
The French Caribbean authors of In Praise of Creoleness (Éloge de la Créolité) exclaim, “Neither Europeans, nor Africans, nor Asians, we proclaim ourselves to be Creoles.” Creoleness, therefore, becomes a metaphor for humanity in all its diversity. Unique among the many images useful for discussing diversity, Creoleness is formed within a history of injustice, oppression, and empire. Creolization offers a way of envisioning a future through the interplay between cultural diversity, injustice and oppression, and intersectionality. People of faith must embrace such metaphors and practices to be relevant and effective for ministry in the 21st century. Using biblical exposition in conversation with present day Creole metaphors and cultural research, Becoming Like Creoles seeks to awaken and prepare followers of Jesus to live and minister in a world where injustice is real and cultural diversity is rapidly increasing. This book will equip ministry readers to embrace a Creole process, becoming culturally competent and social justice focused, whether they are emerging from a history of injustice or they are heirs of privilege.
“For this South African, more and more aware of the essential creoleness of our own society locked in battle with our racist, separatist, disconnected past, this book is a revelation and an invitation to think anew about things that were always so obvious yet so elusive. The personal stories strengthen rather than distract from the core argument and rhythm of this wonderful book, brimming over with fresh, provocative, and delightful insights. This book will change hearts and minds.” –Allan Aubrey Boesak, South African Black liberation theologian and human rights activist
“Becoming Like Creoles recognizes how intersectionality and cultural understandings open our eyes to a better reality. The authors sound a prophetic call to confront injustice. As personal narratives weave into biblical and theological understandings of justice, this profoundly important and insightful book challenges us to rethink and reimagine a just world.” –Grace Ji-Sun Kim, Associate Professor of Theology at Earlham School of Religion and the author or editor of 16 books, including Embracing the Other.
“DeYoung’s writing never fails to invigorate my theological imagination–and Becoming Like Creoles is no exception! A wise collaboration between DeYoung and powerhouse thinker-leaders Jacqueline J. Lewis, Micky ScottBey Jones, Robyn Afrik, Sarah Thompson Nahar, Sindy Morales Garcia and ‘Iwalani Ka’ai, this book plunged me deeper into the word creole, uncovering the many ways in which it can expand and guide my own personal transformation as well the community transformation for which I advocate. I definitely plan to use it both personally and professionally, and hope you will too!” –Christena Cleveland, Activist, public theologian, and director of the Center for Justice and Renewal
“Becoming Like Creoles presents a uniquely biblical model for our interracial/intercultural future that offers new life for both the oppressed and oppressor in a rehumanized community. In this important work, DeYoung masterfully blends six contemporary women of color in the narrative, so as to amplify their voices rather than appropriate them. Perhaps the most important question the book answers is whether whites can be recultured and rehumanized. The answer to this question brought me joy and hope for a reconciled future.” –Randy Woodley, Indigenous speaker and author of Shalom and the Community of Creation: An Indigenous Vision
About the Author
Curtiss Paul DeYoung is the Chief Executive Officer of the Minnesota Council of Churches. He has also served as the Executive Director of Community Renewal Society in Chicago, and as Professor of Reconciliation Studies at Bethel University in St. Paul, MN, He is the author of Living Faith: How Faith Inspires Social Justice, and the co-editor of The People’s Bible.