Science and the Black Church

Scientific research has often destroyed the trust of the black community in the U.S. From the surgical experiments of “father of gynecology” J. Marion Sims on black women without anesthesia to the Tuskegee experiment, history includes terrible examples of researchers abusing the black community.

Wondering how this history might affect black Protestant views on science, Cleve Tinsley IV partnered with Elaine Howard Ecklund and Pamela J. Prickett to study congregations in Houston and Chicago.

Tinsley found several categories of narration in the congregations he spoke to. For some, there was indeed conflict or separation between faith and science, but some also provided space for collaboration between the two, with increased involvement of black scholars and interaction between the two communities.

(continue reading)