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The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Afro American Studies

A general guide to library research in Afro American Studies.

Library Guide for Afro American Studies 222:

The Black Church in America

Taught by Professor Amilcar Shabazz, Fall 2016

Library Guide by Isabel Espinal

*Special focus: Sustainability and the Black Church

Vashti Murphy McKenzie is the first female elected as bishop in the history of the African Methodist Episcopal Church.

Featured Books

Spotlight on Music Online: American Song

Music Online: African American Music Reference is a music history database that lets people hear and feel the music from America's past. The database includes Gospel Music as well as other African American music. 

Album examples:

When I Reach That Heavenly Shore: Unearthly Black Gospel, 1926 - 1936


Check out Track 7. Hiding Behind the Stuff from Vol. 1

Sister Rosetta Tharpe Vol. 1 (1938-1941)

Liner notes

Preachers And Congregations (Many volumes)

Liner notes to Volume 4.

Rev. Kelsey And His Congregation (1947-1951)


 Liner notes


Databases for Scholarly Research on the Black Church

Websites to check : Black Church and Sustainability

Citation Management

Use a citation manager such as Zotero to keep track of your research.

Put all your references in one place, create quick and easy bibliographies, build your knowledgebase for the rest of your career. For help, check out the online guides and webinars or Ask a Librarian.