A new documentary unearths the Christian ideas that propped up the Transatlantic Slave Trade for hundreds of years, and how Christians today might undo their impact.
Comissioned by UK charity Movement for Justice and Reconciliation (MJR), After the Flood: the Church, Slavery & Reconciliation is based on an idea by Professor Robert Beckford, executive produced by Claire Lasko, and produced and directed by Sheila Marshall FRSA.
The film reveals the lesser-known story of how the 18th-century Church came to justify the enslavement of Africans and used the law to embed the supremacy of slave-owners - defined first as "Christian", then as "White".
It pays attention to the UK context, and contours the contemporary impact of this unresolved history. At a time when the Church is reflecting on its limited success on anti-racism, it offers a narrative on the "how"s and "why"s of the Church and racism, and how to move beyond it.
Alton Bell, Chairman of MJR, said, "We commissioned After the Flood to raise awareness, amongst the Christian communities, of the legacies of the Transatlantic Slave Trade and 18th-century industrial exploitation. We want to achieve reconciliation, but we can’t have reconciliation without repairing the damages from the past."