Tuesday, Mar 16, 2021 7:00 PM
Atlanta History Center on Zoom
In his new book, journalist John Archibald asks: Can a good person remain silent in the face of discrimination and horror, and still be a good person?
The Atlanta History Center welcomes the author for a virtual discussion of “Shaking the Gates of Hell: A Search for Family and Truth in the Wake of the Civil Rights Revolution,” on Thursday, March 16, 2021, at 7 PM (EST). Archibald will appear in conversation with Pulitzer Prize-winning syndicated columnist Cynthia Tucker.
This event is free and open to the public. Join the event by registering via the link below.
A Cappella Books will have copies of “Shaking the Gates of Hell,” featuring a bookplate signed by the author, available after the event. Pre-order via the link below. At checkout, choose between the local delivery, curbside pick-up, or shipping options. For zip codes not listed in the above banner, select curbside pick-up or USPS shipping.
About the Book
John Archibald had seen his father, the Rev. Robert L. Archibald, Jr., the son and grandson of Methodist preachers, as a moral authority, a moderate and a moderating force during the racial turbulence of the ’60s, a loving and dependable parent, a forgiving and attentive minister, a man many Alabamians came to see as a saint. But was that enough? Even though Archibald grew up in Alabama in the heart of the civil rights movement, he could recall few words about racial rights or wrongs from his father’s pulpit at a time the South seethed, and this began to haunt him.
In this moving and powerful book, Archibald writes of his complex search, and of the conspiracy of silence his father faced in the South, in the Methodist Church and in the greater Christian church. Those who spoke too loudly were punished, or banished, or worse. Archibald’s father was warned to guard his words on issues of race to protect his family, and he did. He spoke to his flock in the safety of parable, and trusted in the goodness of others, even when they earned none of it, rising through the ranks of the Methodist Church, and teaching his family lessons in kindness and humanity, and devotion to nature and the Earth.
Archibald writes of this difficult, at times uncomfortable, reckoning with his past in this unadorned, affecting book of growth and evolution.
About the Author
John Archibald is a journalist for The Birmingham News, where he has been a regular columnist since 2004. In 2018, Archibald was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Commentary. He lives in Birmingham, Alabama.