Pastoral Psychology

, Volume 62, Issue 5, pp 649–669 | Cite as

The Dark Night of Rage in a Culture of Nihilism: An Interdisciplinary Examination of Remembered Faces

  • Gregory C. EllisonII
  • Hashim Pipkin


This interdisciplinary survey of literature examines varied definitions of rage in social psychology, psychoanalysis, pastoral care, criminology, literature, and Biblical scripture in order to develop a more robust understanding of the destructive and generative elements of rage impacting the lives of many African American young men (ages 15–35). Specific attention is given to cultural forces of nihilism (consumption, chance, codependence and concealment) that incubate feelings of rage in numerous African American young men.


Rage Black rage Anger Nihilism Daimon Charles Darwin Sigmund Freud William Grier and Price Cobb James Baldwin Bell hooks Cornel West Mark 5:1–19 



A special word of thanks to Brandon Williams, Antoinette Ellison, Marita Harrell, Reginald Wilborn, the family of Bobby Tillman, and a spiritual and literary cloud of witnesses, for spurring me to face my rage and write with a freedom only granted by the Holy Spirit and the sanctified daimon within me.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Candler School of Theology at Emory UniversityAtlantaUSA

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