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A Second Appeal

A Consideration of Freedom and Social Justice

Daphne M. Rolle

A Second Appeal: A Consideration of Freedom and Social Justice engages in an analysis of the ideals of freedom and social justice. It does so with an eye towards the development of universally applicable concepts of each. Rolle examines the work of David Walker, author of Appeal to the Colored Citizens of the World, who, in his own writing, appeals to the slave to embrace a particular theologically based understanding of freedom and participate in insurrectionist activities to overthrow slavery. A Second Appeal considers whether Walker was mistaken in his conception of freedom or merely constrained by the very particular time and circumstances in which he was writing. Rolle's work asserts the goal-oriented concept of freedom that shapes David Walker's Appeal is not sufficient for current concerns. A Second Appeal prompts readers to rethink these ideals. « less more »
University Press of America
Pages: 40Size: 6 x 9 1/8
978-0-7618-4961-2 • Paperback • February 2010 • $24.99 • (£15.95)
978-0-7618-4962-9 • eBook • February 2010 • $24.99 • (£15.95)
Daphne M. Rolle received her Ph.D. in 2002 from Purdue University, where she studied under Dr. Leonard Harris. She now teaches African-American philosophy and American philosophy at Ball State University. She lives in central Indiana with her husband and two children.
Chapter 1 Preface
Chapter 2 Article I: Analysis of David Walker's Appeal
Chapter 3 Article II: Against Identity Theology
Chapter 4 Article III: The Essence of Freedom
Chapter 5 Article IV: On Values
Chapter 6 Index
Chapter 7 Author Bio
Dr. Rolle's passion for philosophers to move beyond platitudes and esoteric debates is inspiring and contagious. My deep hope is that her colleagues will take seriously their role in effecting positive, lasting change in the larger society.
Larry Smith, director, Millennium Initiative, The Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University

Rolle uncovers Walker's concept of freedom - not one based on liberal individual free will but one based on freedom from insult and race-based oppression. Rolle also uncovers Walker's justification for insurrection, his biblical basis, and his rejection of pacifism or moral suasion. Walker's 'identity theology,' similar to 'liberation theology' is made explicit - God is a God that makes 'distinctions' and thereby favors one social category over another. Here is where Rolle enters…making values central; foregrounding concepts such as salvation, responsibility, reciprocity; and Rolle argues for a concept of freedom that is neither contingent on romanticizing individual freedom of the will nor social liberation. Occasionally speaking in the same collective voice as Walker, (We), Rolle's "we" is different than Walker's. Rolle's literary strategy works. It creates a 'Second' Appeal and thereby contributes a fascinating, albeit controversial, intellectual dialogue on a classical text.
Leonard Harris, Ph.D., director, Philosophy and Literature Ph.D. Program, Purdue University