Congrats to Contributor Emily Suzanne Clark & #luminousbros!

Religion in American History would like to give a hearty CONGRATULATIONS to RiAH Contributor Emily Suzanne Clark and her book A Luminous Brotherhood: Afro-Creole Spiritualism in Nineteenth-Century New Orleans for receiving the Southern Historical Association's Francis B. Simkins Award for the best first book in Southern History!

Emily first shared a portion of her work on Afro-Creole Spiritualism here at RiAH when she was working on her dissertation. In her March 2013 post "Bless Jesus and Lincoln," Emily discussed an event that occurred on the same day in March 1869. Then (as well as now), it was clear that Emily was contextualizing this group and their historic moment in ways that could illuminate more for the rest of us to see.

For current graduate students and recent PhDs, it might be worthwhile to note that Emily shared this portion of her work publicly as she was actively working on it. After landing her current TT position at Gonzaga University, defending her dissertation, and graduating (yes, in that order too. NBD), she wrote two more posts, "Materiality and Afro-Creole Spiritualism" and "Amusing Archive Finds," while transitioning her dissertation to a book manuscript. It's in the comment section where Blogmeister Paul Harvey announced his assessment of Emily's larger project, writing, "Wanted to let you all know that Emily's dissertation/soon-to-be-book manuscript is one of the best I've read in a good long while, with wonderfully fresh and exciting research."

The Southern Historical Association agrees! According to the SHA press release, A Luminous Brotherhood has "great originality and imagination" and it
"tells us much that we did not know about African American spirituality…. Writing model microhistory with the verve of a much more seasoned scholar, this young author demonstrates exquisite command of her material, knowing just when to blow up her story to show its transnational implications, and when to take it back down to the local and the minute.”
It comes as no surprise to Paul that #luminousbros is receiving accolades, and I'm sure others fortunate enough to be behind the scenes as this book came together would agree. (In fact, I suspect the person who is most surprised will be the author herself!)

If you haven't read it yet, #luminousbros is available at UNC press and Amazon. While you're waiting for your copy to arrive, you can listen to Emily talk about her book with Dave Krueger at Marginalia's First Impressions.

Congrats again, Emily!


Paul Harvey said…
Yeah for #luminousbros! And a shout out to myself for creating that hashtag, lol.
esclark said…
That hashtag was one of your greatest gifts to me.
Unknown said…
Oui oui ! All those Saturday afternoons spent on French translations payed off.
Curtis J. Evans said…
Yay! Well deserved indeed.

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