"Sisters of the Spirit... should interest a wider audience.... These fascinating accounts can stand on their own.... Mr. Andrews has made them even more accessible by providing a comprehensive introduction and helpful footnotes... but he does not intrude on the text itself." New York Times Book Review
"... informative and inspiring reading." The Journal of American History
Jarena Lee, Zilpha Elaw, and Julia Foote underwent a revolution in their own sense of self that helped to launch a feminist revolution in American religious life and in American society as a whole.
Andrews, a University of Wisconsin English professor, has collected the spiritual autobiographies of Jarena Lee, Zilpha Elaw and Julia Foote, who preached the gospel from 1836 to 1879 and were pioneers as women, preachers and blacks at a time when slavery was ending in the U.S. These memoirs chronicle difficult childhoods, religious conversions in revival camp meetings and adult lives dedicated to saving souls across black and white America. While some readers may find the evangelical language slow going, these texts remain important documents of racial and feminist radicalism in American religious life. (May)