The major controversy among critics of James Baldwin’s 1953 autobiographical novel, Go Tell It on the Mountain, is how to reconcile the book’s intensely felt affirmation of religious faith with the author’s personal rejection of that faith and his expressed contempt for the church, specifically the African-American fundamentalist church he both grew up in and depicts in the novel. The book strikes many readers as a modern-day version of Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress, a spiritual journey that culminates in the realization of faith. However, Baldwin, in his 1962 non-fiction work, The Fire Next Time, condemned the Christian faith as “based on the principles of Blindness, Loneliness and Terror, the first principle necessary and actively cultivated in order to deny the two other” (47). Of the church itself, he writes:
There was no love in the church. It was a mask of hatred and self-despair. When we were told to love everybody, I had thought that meant everybody. But it applied only to those who believed as we did and it did not apply to white people at all. (57-58)
Statements such as these have often guided critics to reject the possibility of the novel presenting a favorable view of religious faith. They hold, implicitly and explicitly, that Baldwin could not have rendered faith’s affirmation with such intensity if it no longer held any resonance for him; they argue, essentially, that he is rendering another subject altogether. Wallace Graves writes that the book’s climax, in which John Grimes, Baldwin’s autobiographical protagonist, undergoes a religious conversion, presents a conversion that is not religious at all. Rather, it “stand[s] for John’s (Baldwin’s) feeling of moral energy as an artist […] John emerges into a golden dawn symbolizing the emergence of the artist from his chrysalis” (219). David E. Foster reads the moment as an affirmation of African-American masculinity within John, writing that the character “finds grace not in rejecting blackness but in seeking it the only way it is available to him—as a black man” (55). Maria K. Mootry maintains that the book’s finale depicts John’s acceptance of his homosexuality; the so-called conversion “liberates him from “closet” feelings and brings into the light his homoerotic needs” (52). Other critics, such as James R. Giles, Michael F. Lynch, and Nagueyalti Warren, reject the view that the climactic conversion depicts any kind of affirmation whatsoever.
Other critics, though, accept John’s conversion as a personal affirmation and realization of faith. Shirley S. Allen reads the novel as a depiction of the character’s rite of passage into a mature faith and adulthood, writing, “[t]he love of God becomes, in the end, the cloak of manhood, which is golden like the cross. After seeing the light, John stands up as an adult” (198). Rolf Lunden specifically argues that the reading of the novel as a contemporary Pilgrim’s Progress is a valid one; the conversion depicted was authentic relative to John’s (and, by extension, Baldwin’s) circumstances at the point in his life in question (115). One infers, particularly from Lunden’s reading, that the novel presents only the first part of the character’s journey towards self-realization; one sees John’s attainment of an independent self, but he has yet to attain the final self that is Baldwin.
The classic paradigm of the dynamic of self-realization, posited by G.W.F. Hegel in The Phenomenonology of Mind, functions in two parts. According to Hegel, “an individual makes its appearance in antithesis to [another] individual” (231). In terms of the Hegelian dialectic, one individual is the thesis, while the other that exists in the relationship is the antithesis. The individual constituting the thesis is the Master, described by Hegel as “the consciousness that exists for itself” (234). The individual embodying the antithesis, the Bondsman, is, as its name indicates, the subordinate party in the relationship. The relationship gradually progresses to a moment of culmination or synthesis. In that moment, the Bondsman, “being a consciousness repressed within itself, […] will enter into itself, and change round into real and true independence” (237). It enters into this independence, the first stage of self-realization, through the recognition of itself in the Master. In the Bondsman’s moment of independence, the Master (thesis) merges with the Bondsman (antithesis) to create the independent Bondsman (synthesis). According to Hegel, the Bondsman “must set itself to sublate the other independent being, in order thereby to become certain of itself as true being” (229). In other words, it must negate or eliminate the Master (or, more specifically, its sense of the Master’s power over itself), but preserve an aspect of the Master in its own consciousness as part of a synthesis. The Bondsman, in essence, redefines the Master in its own terms and merges this redefinition with its sense of its own self. Having achieved independence, it is now ready to begin the second stage of self-realization. At this moment, according to Hegel, “it thereupon proceeds to sublate its own self, for this other is itself […] giv[ing] otherness back again to the other self-consciousness [the Master], for it was aware of being in the other, it cancels this its own being in the other and thus lets the other again go free” (229-230). In other words, in the final moment of self-realization, the former Bondsman recognizes the remaining vestiges of the Master within itself and purges them.
Go Tell It on the Mountain dramatizes the first stage of Hegel’s paradigm. In the novel, John Grimes is subordinate to his stepfather Gabriel, a relationship easily characterized as oppressive. Gabriel grounds his authority in religious faith, which proves to be the means through which John breaks Gabriel’s hold on his life. He makes the faith his own, his moment of independence occurring in an episode of religious conversion, the moment when he is “saved” and reborn into the Christian faith. To paraphrase Hegel, Gabriel is the Master, the individual representing the thesis. John is his antithesis, or the Bondsman. In the moment of conversion, the culmination of the two’s relationship, John negates Gabriel’s power over him by appropriating Gabriel’s faith and using it to redefine himself—to establish a new sense of identity. The synthesis creates an emotionally secure, independent-minded John, who locates his strength in the tenets of the church.
Hegel describes the Master as one who “exists only for himself” (236), his self-definition coming from the recognition of others who subordinate themselves to him (235-236). Playing this role seems particularly suited to Gabriel’s personality. He was a sexually promiscuous delinquent in his youth, but, even then, according to Baldwin, he “wanted to be master, to speak with that authority that could only come from God” (95). He sees religious faith as a means of accomplishing this goal. Baldwin writes that “he wanted power—he wanted to know himself to be the Lord’s anointed, His well-beloved, and worthy, nearly, of that snow-white dove which had been sent down from Heaven to testify that Jesus was the Son of God” (95). His using the self-declared purity of his faith to belittle others is present even in his youth. As an aspiring minister, he witnesses a group of more established ministers mock the attractiveness of Deborah, a friend of his family who has been stigmatized by rape. He uses this moment to disparage them:
Gabriel felt his blood turn cold that God’s ministers should be guilty of such abominable levity […] They felt, he knew, that among themselves a little rude laughter could do no harm; they were too deeply rooted in the faith to be made to fall by such an insignificant tap from Satan’s hammer. But he stared at their boisterous, laughing faces, and felt that they would have much to answer for on the day of judgment, for they were stumbling stones in the path of the true believer. (107-108)
Belittling others is the first stepping-stone along the path of self-aggrandizement, and Gabriel calls them on his behavior. He receives a mild rebuke for his boldness, but he feels triumphant. Baldwin writes that, in Gabriel’s eyes, “he had found them out and they were a little ashamed and confounded before his purity. And he understood suddenly the words of Christ, where it was written: “Many are called but few are chosen” (108). Triumph, however, can lead to greater triumph, and Gabriel sees a further means of glorifying himself: he will marry Deborah. His role, as he sees it, is to redeem her from the dishonor of her rape and that “their married bed would be holy, and their children would continue the line of the faithful, a royal line” (109). He has his misgivings; he worries about “what filthy conjecture, barely sleeping now, would mushroom upward […]” (109) as a result—Deborah is considered a ruined woman and he only a recently reformed reprobate—but he comes to see even that as a sign of his innate superiority. Baldwin describes him as feeling “as Christ must have felt in the temple, facing His so utterly confounded elders” (110). Gabriel sees everything as being for his own glory; he is an intensely egomaniacal man.
Masters need Bondsmen, and Gabriel, in his dealings with others, is depicted by Baldwin as always seeking to convert relationships into the Master-Bondsman paradigm. He fails with both Deborah and his mistress Esther. Deborah is eight years his senior and a friend of his mother, but when she hugs him following his marriage proposal, he patronizingly refers to her as “little girl” (113). He never succeeds in making her subordinate to him, though, and that may be why the marriage is so unfulfilling: Baldwin writes that, after the marriage, “he and Deborah never talked” (117). He also seeks to be domineering in his relationship with his mistress, Esther. She attracts him by making him feel inadequate, by treating his work as a minister dismissively. Baldwin writes, “On her tongue the very title of his calling became a mark of disrespect” (123). Gabriel reacts, in one instance, by wanting to strike her (126). He repeatedly argues with her about her unwillingness to accept God in her life but accomplishes nothing. His ultimate response to his failure is a physical one: he forces her to have sex, despite her ambivalence and protestations, in their employer’s kitchen (126-127). But, as with Deborah, he cannot maintain the upper hand in the relationship; Esther repeatedly uses her pregnancy to reassert the advantage in her dealings with him. Gabriel, in breaking off the affair, describes it as a moment of “having fallen” (127), one of failure; he resolves never to fall again. The failure is twofold: the failure to dominate another and the failure of sin. The failure to dominate does not characterize his relationships with John and John’s mother, Gabriel’s second wife, Elizabeth.
As he is wont to do, Gabriel uses religion and the aspiration to live by Christian ideals as his means of conquest. He meets Elizabeth and John at his sister Florence’s apartment. His first conversation with Elizabeth begins with a discussion of the wantonness of New York as compared with that of the South. Florence makes a passing remark that “folks sure better not do in the dark what they’re scared to look at in the light” (184). Baldwin has Gabriel reply, “That’s the Lord’s truth […] Does you really believe that?” (184). Baldwin presents this as a lure for Gabriel’s baited hook, describing Elizabeth as having “felt at that moment the intensity of the attention that Florence fixed on her, as though she were trying to shout a warning” (184). Florence has no use for his self-righteousness, musing at one point that “if Gabriel was the Lord’s anointed, she would rather die and endure Hell for all eternity than bow before His altar” (66); she recognizes Gabriel’s question as an enticement for those he would put in thrall to him. He succeeds: his self-righteous identification of himself with God and Christian ideals brings Elizabeth hope that, with him accompanying her, she can atone for her own sinful past. As Baldwin writes, “Gabriel had become her strength” (186). He captivates John as well. At that first meeting, Gabriel looks at John, then a toddler, and asks, “You reckon you going to dance for the Lord one of these days?” (183). Baldwin writes that, in response, “John looked with a child’s impenetrable gravity into the preacher’s face, as though he were turning this question over in his mind and would answer when he had thought it out” (183). He treats Gabriel with deference. It is not a deference he shows to either Elizabeth or Florence; as shown elsewhere in the episode, he behaves like a normal toddler with them, acting on his impulses.
Hegel refers to “immediate self-consciousness,” a moment when “the simple ego is absolute object” (234). It is a description that fits the general mindset of a toddler, who relates to the world in terms of impulses and appetites, seeing others as simply an object for those impulses or as a means of satisfying appetites. Hegel writes that in the immediate self-consciousness, the mind has “substantial and solid independence” (234). This state ends when a Master-Bondsman relationship is established. According to Hegel, “The dissolution of that simple unity [substantial and solid independence] is the result of the first experience; through this there is posited a pure self-consciousness, and a consciousness which is not purely for itself, but for another […]” (234). The Master is the “pure self-consciousness”; the Bondsman is the “consciousness not purely for itself”. Gabriel is the former. He puts the question to John from the standpoint of “pure self-consciousness”; he asks the question simply because he wanted to hear himself ask it. Given his self-aggrandizing nature, it is likely that he asked it in an effort to impress either Elizabeth or his sister. It is not a question asked in the spirit of interaction; Gabriel isn’t looking for John to respond. One infers from the text that John, in this scene, is less than a year old; he is incapable of understanding what the question even means. The moment is not an interaction for Gabriel, but it is one for John; Baldwin’s description of the boy’s response implies that, at that moment, John is defining himself in relation to Gabriel. The man’s attention is to be respected and returned; John would answer if he could. His consciousness is no longer concerned exclusively with himself; he shows interest in the consciousness of another. He has become the Bondsman to Gabriel’s Master.
Baldwin’s depiction of their relationship during John’s adolescence shows that John continues to define himself in Gabriel’s terms. (Gabriel is now John’s stepfather and John believes himself to be Gabriel’s natural son.) John is an adolescent, though, and adolescence means rebellion. As such, John’s tendency is define his values in opposition to the ones Gabriel professes. Gabriel extols Christian values, which include humility, modesty, and a disdain for appetite. John dreams of a world where he would be someone “[p]eople fell all over themselves to meet […] a poet, or a college president, or a movie star” (19); he dreams of grandeur. Gabriel dreams of grandeur as well, but he identifies it with God’s glory; the grandeur John hungers for is strictly secular. In John’s ideal world, he is also free to indulge in appetite and vanity: “he would eat good food, and wear fine clothes, and would go to the movies as often as he wished […] he drank expensive whiskey, and he smoked Lucky Strike cigarettes in the green package” (19). John describes his ideal world as one “where people did not live in the darkness of his father’s house, did not pray to Jesus in the darkness of his father’s church” (19). The ideal life is one in which Gabriel and his values are negated.
Hegel writes that for the Bondsman, the Master, despite his presence, is independent; the Bondsman, therefore, “cannot, with all his negating, get so far to annihilate it [the Master’s presence in his consciousness] outright and be done with it” (235). As such, John cannot truly reject Gabriel as long as Gabriel’s opinions and values are of concern in his consciousness. As long as they remain, they will reassert themselves; Gabriel will remain the Master. In the scene where John examines his face in the mirror, Baldwin makes clear that Gabriel’s views are still of paramount concern. Gabriel has belittled John by saying that he has the face of Satan; John looks for confirmation that Gabriel is right. He first manages to be both dismissive and accepting of Gabriel’s opinion; he remarks that “the hand of Satan was as yet invisible” (27). The Devil is both absent and present in his face simultaneously; it is absent in that John is unable to see it, but it is present in that it is invisible. The Devil’s presence becomes more palpable the more he looks; he wonders if the shape of his eyebrows or his hairline confirms Gabriel’s view. John then accepts Gabriel’s view without question, noting that “[i]n the eye there was a light that was not the light of Heaven, and the mouth trembled, lustful and lewd, to drink deep of the wines of Hell” (27). There is a moment in the episode when Gabriel’s views are not of John’s concern; John sees his face as “the face of a stranger” (27), and examines it objectively. Gabriel’s views, however, reassert themselves: John looks at the cleft in his chin and remembers that Gabriel said “it was the mark of the devil” (27). John works at purging Gabriel, but Gabriel always returns.
This lasts until John’s conversion, which, in the novel, functions as the process through which the Bondsman achieves independence from the Master. It begins for John when he recognizes that independence is what the conversion offers him. Delivering himself to God, becoming “saved”—these mark a moment when John, according to Baldwin, “would no longer be the son of his father, but the son of his Heavenly Father, the King […] He could speak to his father as men spoke to one another” (145). John, however, still lets his hatred of Gabriel define him; Gabriel, not God, is still the guiding presence. John muses that conversion “was not what he wanted. He did not want to love his father; he wanted to hate him, to cherish that hatred” (145). He wants Gabriel dead, but, in contemplating the prospect of this, he comes to realize that Gabriel is not the source of his sense of oppression; what he hates is the guiding presence of Gabriel in his consciousness. Gabriel’s death will not release him from that oppression. He realizes that with Gabriel’s death “it will not be finished. The everlasting father” (146). He realizes the need to negate the eternal of Gabriel with the eternal of God.
Hegel writes that negation is partially achieved through a confrontation between the Master and the Bondsman:
The relation of both self-consciousnesses is in this way so constituted that they prove themselves and each other through a life-and-death struggle. They must enter into this struggle, for they must bring their certainty of themselves, the certainty of being for themselves, to the level of objective truth, and make this a fact both in the case of the other and in their own case as well. (233)
Hegel is not positing that the Bondsman literally kill the Master on the route to self-realization. If that were the case, then fathers would traditionally die at the hands of their sons. The struggle he describes is the life-and-death struggle to maintain or eliminate the Master’s presence in the Bondsman’s consciousness. John and Gabriel look into the other’s eyes; that is the means of their confrontation. Baldwin writes that “Gabriel had never seen such a look before; Satan, at that moment, stared out of John’s eyes” (150). Gabriel sees John’s certainty of being for himself; John’s defining desire is to negate Gabriel’s presence within his consciousness. As Gabriel identifies himself with the voice of God, he would equate the desire to negate his presence with the desire to negate God’s presence. He would, therefore, view such a desire as the presence of Satan. John, in unleashing the full intensity of this desire for Gabriel to see, raises it to the level of objective truth. Gabriel, once the initial shock of the confrontation is past, begins to see John’s gaze from that standpoint. He sees in John’s eyes the gaze of every set of disapproving eyes he has ever confronted, and, in that moment, he is defeated. Baldwin writes that John’s eyes “seemed to want to stare forever into the bottom of Gabriel’s soul” (150). Gabriel recognizes John as a judging presence within his own consciousness and the tables are turned. The finality of the break comes when John turns away from Gabriel towards the altar; Baldwin describes the turning as a “movement like a curse” (150). John rejects Gabriel with finality by turning to God.
The realization of independence from Gabriel is not, however, complete. Hegel writes that the freed consciousness must see its freedom “as pure existence for itself or as absolute negation” (233). The consciousness must confront the possibility of absolute negation, of its own failure to achieve independence. After turning from Gabriel, John’s consciousness shifts into a metaphysical realm. He sees himself alone, in nothingness; Baldwin writes that he finds himself, “helpless, screaming, at the very bottom of darkness” (193). He recognizes himself as an individual, an other; all the people of importance in his life—Gabriel, Elizabeth, Florence, a young parishioner named Elisha—are seen as standing apart. He then confronts Gabriel’s presence in his consciousness for the last time; he feels Gabriel look into soul—a moment of terror—but then he looks into Gabriel’s. He sees past Gabriel’s holy pretense, saying, “I don’t care about your golden crown. I don’t care about your long white robe. I seen you under the robe, I seen you!” (199). John has been presented with the possibility of returning to playing Bondsman to Gabriel’s Master and rejects it. He then ascends to what he takes to be the presence of God. Baldwin writes, “The light and the darkness had kissed each other, and were married now, forever, in the life and the vision of John’s soul” (204). John’s independence from Gabriel has been achieved.
This is not to say that John has come into the presence of God; this is simply how he perceives the synthesis of Gabriel’s Master and his Bondsman into his new, current self. He must accomplish this, in Hegel’s terms, by sublating Gabriel’s presence within his own consciousness; he must negate Gabriel’s presence but preserve it as a partial element within his mind. He does this by purging the presence of Gabriel’s personality while embracing the ideals that Gabriel putatively represents. He becomes suffused with what he perceives as the love of God, which he extends to all he encounters. The synthesis is clear in the novel’s final moment:
And he felt his father behind him. And he felt the March wind rise, striking through his damp clothes, against his salty body. He turned to face his father—he found himself smiling, but his father did not smile.
They looked at each other a moment. His mother stood in the doorway, in the long shadows of the hall.
“I’m ready,” John said, “I’m coming. I’m on my way.” (221)
John meets Gabriel as an equal, what he realized would happen at the beginning of his conversion if he embraced what he perceives as God. He smiles at Gabriel, a sign of his embrace of Christian ideals—he forgives the one he has hated the most. Gabriel does not smile back, which signifies two things. The first is that he does not embrace Christian ideals, regardless of his posturing; he cannot find it within himself to forgive John for his perceived transgressions. The second is an acknowledgement of defeat; John has defeated Gabriel in their battle of wills. John has absolutely triumphed over Gabriel as a personality; he has defeated Gabriel entirely on Gabriel’s own terms. He goes on to walk life’s road as an independent self.
The statement, “I’m on my way”, however, is troublesome; one infers that John has not yet reached his destination. And the novel’s opening lines suggest an ultimate destination very different from the one depicted in the novel’s conclusion:
Everyone had always said that John would be a preacher when he grew up, just like his father. It had been said so often that John, without ever thinking about it, had come to believe it himself. Not until the morning of his fourteenth birthday did he really begin to think about it, and by then it was already too late. (11)
These lines, particularly the “by then it was already too late,” indicate a hostility to religion that one infers is ultimately John’s. (It corresponds to Baldwin’s hostility as well.) There is, however, no section of the novel that depicts a shift from the sense of affirmation found in the finale to the contempt for religion and the faith suggested by the opening. Hegel’s paradigm of self-realization, however, suggests what is missing. John has completed the stage of finding independence, but he has yet to complete the full act of realizing himself as an individual. According to Hegel, the final transformation will come when John has sublated the last vestiges of Gabriel present in his consciousness; self-realization will be achieved when he repudiates the tenets of the Christian faith through which he fought free of Gabriel’s presence in his consciousness.
At the novel’s conclusion, John may strike one as having traded one Master for another; he gives up Gabriel for the church. The latter is personified by Elisha, the parishioner who, in effect, becomes John’s new father. He’s a logical candidate for this role: John is described as looking up to Elisha even before his conversion. Baldwin writes:
John stared at Elisha all during the lesson, admiring the timbre of Elisha’s voice, much deeper and manlier than his own, admiring the leanness, and grace, and strength, and darkness of Elisha in his Sunday suit, wondering if he would ever be holy as Elisha was holy. (13)
Elisha is clearly a role model for John. He also functions as a father figure, a genial alternative to Gabriel. Both Elisha and Gabriel are described as admonishing John for not learning his Sunday school lesson. Baldwin includes the descriptions in the same paragraph, so a contrast seems intended. John’s inattentiveness earns him Gabriel’s “wrath” (13), which, one infers from other passages, includes beatings. However, Elisha, according to Baldwin, “would smile and reprimand him gently” (13). Elisha’s response seems much more appropriate to the circumstances; one would think him the most likely candidate to become an alternative authority figure for John. And he does assume this role, in a way, before John’s conversion. He is the one who encourages John to seek divine affirmation. During the conversion, Baldwin writes of John, “[a]s he cursed his father, as he loved Elisha” (195); the transference of John’s allegiance to Elisha becomes clear. Elisha also shepherds John through the conversion process; he was this brother-in-faith’s keeper, shouting encouragement to John throughout. In the conversion’s aftermath, he even assumes, teasingly, the role of disciplinarian that Gabriel will never again fill. Elisha can be said to personify the sublation of Gabriel achieved by John during his ascension.
According to Hegel, John must sublate the sublation of Gabriel in order to achieve self-realization; he must filter out the vestiges of Gabriel’s presence that Elisha represents. These are the attachment to the church and the tenets of Christian faith. As Baldwin’s remarks in The Fire Next Time reveal, and the novel’s opening suggestively confirms, this constitutes rejection of the church and the tenets of Christian faith. (This, of course, assumes that John is an autobiographical character.) A coming rift between John and Elisha is implied, and the reason for that rift is readily apparent: John’s homosexuality. As James R. Giles and Maria K. Mooty, among many others, have observed, John’s budding homosexual desires find a focus with Elisha. Given Elisha’s heterosexuality and commitment to the church, both of which would preclude a homosexual relationship, one can justifiably assume that he is on a path towards rejecting—perhaps very harshly—John’s interest in him. Elisha personifies the synthesis of John’s self with Gabriel during the intermediate independence stage of self-realization; he embodies for John both religious faith and homosexuality. The synthesis of the realized self from the independent self requires, in John’s case, the elimination of religious faith. The necessary sublation of Elisha will leave only homosexuality. Go Tell It on the Mountain illustrates and suggests a path to self-realization that ends, one infers, with the novel’s protagonist recognizing himself as homosexual.
Hegel’s paradigm of self-realization provides a coherent reading of the novel in addition to providing of synthesis for some of the critical views debating it. In using that paradigm, one is able to acknowledge that opposing critical camps—those who read the novel as sincerely religious and those who read it an affirmation of homosexuality—are both right. The novel allows for and may even demand both views. One must only realize that the novel does not begin or end with the printed text.
Allen, Shirley S. “Religious Symbolism and Psychic Reality in Baldwin’s Go Tell It on the Mountain.” CLA 19 (1975): 173-199.
Baldwin, James. The Fire Next Time. New York: Dial, 1962.
Baldwin, James. Go Tell It on the Mountain. New York: Dell, 1985.
Bunyan, John. The Pilgrim’s Progress. Ed. N. H. Keeble. New York: Oxford UP, 1984.
Foster, David E. “ “ ‘Cause My House Fell Down”: The Theme of the Fall in Baldwin’s Novels.” Critique 13 (1971): 50-62.
Giles, James R. “Religious Alienation and Homosexual Consciousness in City of Night and Go Tell It on the Mountain.” College English 36 (1974): 369-380.
Graves, Wallace. “The Question of Moral Energy in James Baldwin’s Go Tell It on the Mountain.” CLA 7 (1964): 215-223.
Hegel, G.W.F. The Phenomenology of Mind. Rev. 2nd ed. Trans. J.B. Baillie. London: George Allen, 1949.
Lunden, Rolf. “The Progress of a Pilgrim: James Baldwin’s Go Tell It on the Mountain." Studio Neophilologica 53 (1981): 113-126.
Lynch, Michael F. “The Everlasting Father: Mythic Quest and Rebellion in Baldwin’s Go Tell It on the Mountain.” CLA 37 (1993): 156-175.
Mootry, Maria K. “Baldwin’s Go Tell It on the Mountain.” The Explicator 43.2 (1985): 50-52.
Warren, Nagueyalti. “The Substance of Things Hoped For: Faith in Go Tell It on the Mountain.” Obsidian II 7 (1992): 19-32.