The Journal of Postcolonial Networks just published my new articles on Jacques Roumain entitled “Faith, Secular Humanism, and Development: A Reading of Jacques Roumain’s Religious Sensibility and Marxist Rhetoric.” Happy Reading!
“This essay investigates the intersections of religion, social transformation, and Marxist social theory in the thought of Jacques Roumain. It argues that Roumain’s radical perspective on religion and development, and his critiques of institutionalized Christianity, were substantially influenced by a Marxist conception of historical materialism and secular humanist approach to faith and human progress. Roumain rejects Christianity for its ineffective societal role in fostering social change. This essay also contends that Roumain’s rejection of religious supernaturalism and divine intervention in human affairs and history was shaped by his non-theistic humanism and secular worldview on faith. Ultimately, the essay demonstrates that Roumain believes that only through effective human solidarity and collaboration can serious social transformation and real human freedom take place. He downplays the potential role of religion to deal adequately with the ambiguities of life in this world. Roumain holds that man is the measure of all things and his own agent of liberation. Consequently, individuals themselves must cooperate and unite in order to alter the social order toward a fruitful life of peace, harmony, and freedom.”