Paperback, 256 pp
Examines the rich heritage of African American women who have proclaimed–and still proclaim–God’s word.
Against all odds, African American women have passionately proclaimed the goodness of God and lifted up Jesus’ name despite barriers of race, class, denomination, education and gender. In response to a sense of deliverance from evil and in gratitude for answered prayers, these women have related their faith and trust in God in sacred places such as ships, fields, homes, barns, factories, hospitals, schools, pulpits, missionary societies, and over kitchen sinks. Even when disenfranchised in the religious communities they helped create, African American women continue to “say a word” about God, whether they are ordained or not.
This book provides a brief review of the rich heritage of African American female proclaimers and examines contemporary African American women’s sermon preparation, content, delivery, and personhood. Brown draws heavily on interviews and conversations, as well as audio and video tapes of women proclaiming God’s word, to relate how and why African American women tell others about God despite resistance (weary throats) and with the help of support (new songs) in religious and social communities.
Teresa L. Fry Brown is the Bandy Professor of Preaching at Emory University’s Candler School of Theology in Atlanta, where she became the first African American woman to attain the rank of full professor. She holds a PhD from Iliff School of Theology in Denver and is ordained in the African Methodist Episcopal Church.