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Article

Pray the White Way: Religious Expression in the NFL in Black and White

Department of Philosophy, University of Colorado Colorado Springs, Colorado Springs, CO 80918, USA
Religions 2019, 10(8), 470; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10080470
Received: 6 July 2019 / Revised: 30 July 2019 / Accepted: 31 July 2019 / Published: 6 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sport, Spirituality, and Religion: New Intersections)
Athletes, particularly players in the National Football League, have repeatedly invoked God in order to glorify, praise, or even credit the divine with success on the field. This essay examines the ways in which different types of religious language used to bring God onto the gridiron are received and evaluated along racial lines. I seek to show that speech by athletes, in particular black football players, that communicates a God who is partisan and intervenes in action on the field is routinely dismissed by fellow players, the media, and religious authorities who favor a God who either intervenes softly and generally or is above the game altogether. I contend that a double standard is applied to this theological debate due to a disregard of historical African American theology and to hegemonic white evangelical norms that police such discourse. View Full-Text
Keywords: race; national football league; religious expression; prayer; black church; providentialism; evangelicalism race; national football league; religious expression; prayer; black church; providentialism; evangelicalism
MDPI and ACS Style

Scholes, J. Pray the White Way: Religious Expression in the NFL in Black and White. Religions 2019, 10, 470. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10080470

AMA Style

Scholes J. Pray the White Way: Religious Expression in the NFL in Black and White. Religions. 2019; 10(8):470. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10080470

Chicago/Turabian Style

Scholes, Jeffrey. 2019. "Pray the White Way: Religious Expression in the NFL in Black and White" Religions 10, no. 8: 470. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10080470

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