Scene from Nashville Civil Rights protests.
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Title:Scene from Nashville Civil Rights protests

Sadly, in addition to physical violence, one of the realities the students participating in the sit-ins faced was jail time. Indeed, during the fourth sit-in on February 27, 1960, 79 students were arrested. Yet, as John Lewis reflects, being arrested became on many levels a method of consecration and blessing of their fight against segregation. He states, "Growing up in the rural South, you learned it was not the thing to do. To go to jail was to bring shame and disgrace on the family. But for me it was like being involved in a holy crusade, it became a badge of honor."

The theme found in this week's Lenten lectionary text, Psalm 32, rings clear in the face of Lewis' re-envisioning his incarceration as a "badge of honor." Rather than finding self-worth in a corrupted legal system, Lewis was able to persevere in the knowledge of God's deliverance.

Building:Jean and Alexander Heard Library
Country:United States

Scripture:Psalm 32
Lectionary links:CLent04
General Subject:Civil Rights

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Copyright Source:Vanderbilt University Special Collections
Copyright Permission:This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial ShareAlike 3.0 License. In short: you are free to use and to share the file for non-commercial purposes under the conditions that you appropriately attribute it, and that you distribute it only under a license compatible with this one. For uses other than the above, contact the Divinity Library at
Attribution:Scene from Nashville Civil Rights protests, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN. [retrieved July 3, 2020]. Original source: Vanderbilt University Special Collections.
Record Number:54245 Last Updated: 2010-12-21 18:27:39 Record Created: 2009-03-19 13:17:10
Institution:Vanderbilt University Unit: Collection: Art in the Christian Tradition