[D]espite its stated justification—that lynching is merely a response to crime—in most cases victims had. not been convicted, or even charged. with a specific crime— Because of its unpredictability and extralegal nature—black men knew that they could become victims at any time, for any reason—lynching cast a shadow greater than its 3,386 known black (mostly male) victims between 1882 and 1930. It is almost certain that these numbers are understated.2
KeywordsHate Crime Christian Ethic Oppressed People Chattel Slavery Selective Interpretation
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- 1.Although Wells’s anti-lynching publications serve as the primary basis from which a Christian ethic of resistance is delineated in this study, the following works indicate the broad range of sources that address the topic of lynching. James Cutler, Lynch Law: An Investigation into the History of Lynching in the United States (New York: Longmans, Green, 1905)Google Scholar
- 2.Kate Tuttle, “Lynching,” ed. Anthony Appiah and Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Africana: The Encyclopedia of the African and African American Experience, 2nd ed., volume 3 (New York: Oxford University Press, 2005), 663.Google Scholar
- 3.Arthur F. Raper, The Tragedy of Lynching (Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 1933Google Scholar
- 39.For additional information on womanist ethical frameworks see Katie Geneva Cannon, Katie’s Canon: Womanism and the Soul of the Black Community (New York: Continuum, 1995)Google Scholar