Nashville Islamic Center to discuss MLK, Malcolm X legacies

The Islamic Center of Nashville is hosting ‘Between Cross and Crescent: Christian and Muslim Perspectives on Malcolm & Martin’ on Saturday, February 21, at 10:30 am at the Islamic Center at 2515 12th Ave. S.

Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X may have had differing religious beliefs, but their vision of civil rights became the common ground that helped tie the two together.

Authors Lewis V. Baldwin and Amiri al-Hadid, who will discuss both civil rights icons’ legacies and what their lives mean today. The event also marks the 50th anniversary of Malcolm X’s assassination.

There is no more detailed resource about the relationship between Martin King and Malcolm X. The depth of scholarship in this volume extends even to the extraordinary amount of information relegated to footnotes, themselves a gold mine of documentation for all readers interested in the interface between faith claims, politics, and social and cultural transformation.

“Our dynamic speakers will lead us on an important and timely discussion,” Islamic Center President Rashed Fakhruddin said in a news release. “And I look forward to gaining a deeper understanding of our past so that we can be better prepared to deal with the challenges we face in our society, and at the same time, appreciate how far we have advanced as a society thanks in part to the struggles and dedication of these two great men.”

An ordained Baptist minister who has preached throughout the United States, Dr. Baldwin has also established himself as a professor and scholar with a growing reputation. He has taught at Wooster College in Ohio, Colgate University in New York, Colgate-Rochester Divinity School in New York, Fisk University, and American Baptist College in Nashville, and is now a Professor in Religious Studies at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. He is the author of some 60 articles and several books, among which are ‘Invisible’ Strands in African Methodism: A History of the African Union Methodist Protestant and Union American Methodist Episcopal Churches, 1805-1980 (1983); The Mark of a Man: Peter Spencer and the African Union Methodist Tradition (1987); There is a Balm in Gilead: The Cultural Roots of Martin Luther King, Jr. (1991); To Make the Wounded Whole: The Cultural Legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. (1992); Freedom is Never Free: A Biographical Portrait of E.D. Nixon, Sr. (1992); and Toward the Beloved Community: Martin Luther King, Jr. and South Africa(1995). His ‘Invisible’ Strands in African Methodism won the American Theological Library Association Award, and his There is a Balm in Gilead won the Midwest Book Achievement Award of the Midwest Independent Publishers Association.

Dr. Baldwin contributed substantially to two major works, which appeared in published form in 2002.

The event, which will take place 10:30 am to 12:30 pm is free and open to the public.