[Deadline extended] Proposals are invited for inclusion in an edited volume titled Religion and Black Feminist Public Intellectuals from the Nineteenth Century to the Present

deadline for submissions: 
July 10, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
Jami Carlacio, Yale University
contact email: 

Proposals are invited for inclusion in an edited volume titled Religion and Black Feminist Public Intellectuals from the Nineteenth Century to the Present.


The volume’s goal is to present an historical and rhetorical trajectory of black female religious public intellectuals from the nineteenth through twenty-first century and thus seeks papers that will demonstrate these women’s efficacy in creating a movement for social change. The editor welcomes proposals from scholars in various fields whose interests are aligned with the issues outlined above. These include African American Studies, English studies, feminist, gender, and sexuality studies, political science, religious studies, rhetorical history and theory, sociology,  and so on.  Read on.


Since the nineteenth century, Christian black female public intellectuals have called attention to and protested against the discrimination of African American women on the basis of their race, class, and gender, and particularly in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, their sexual orientation. Drawing on their spiritual authority, many of these black feminists--including Maria Stewart, Anna Julia Cooper, Ida B. Wells-Barnett, Frances Watkins Harper, Pauli Murray, bell hooks, Maya Angelou, Oprah Winfrey, Renita Weems, and more--have attempted to dislodge the normative thinking that has occluded the presence of these injustices. Whether marching, writing, preaching, or speaking, their goal has been to challenge and undermine discriminatory practices in all areas of social and political life and spur the public into into action.


Specifically, these activists  have relied on their scriptural knowledge and spiritual strength to build alliances and forge partnerships with others dedicated to social justice in the public sphere. Not simply confined to the academy, these religious feminist activists have made a space for themselves in the public eye to reach multiple audiences, not only those who have perpetuated or are complicit in this system but also those who have been subjected to discrimination and abuse in a system designed to maintain their oppressed status.


Initial inquiries about the project are welcome! Write to Jami.Carlacio@Yale.edu

Successful proposed chapters will do the following:

  • Approach the subject from a black feminist and/or womanist critical framework
  • Focus the discussion on the intersection of their activism, their religious identity, and their role as public intellectuals
  • Analyze their oral and/or written work (sermons, speeches, essays, blogs [no analyses of fictional characters or personae]


Edited chapters should be about 20 pages in length (5,000 words). Submit typed, double-spaced papers using 12-point Times New Roman font, and adhere to the latest updates according to MLA style conventions.


Interested authors should submit to jami.carlacio@yale.edu the following for consideration, by July 10, 2018

·           A 250- to 300-word abstract with working title

·           A 150-word biography

·           A two-page version of their CV (graduate program, employment, relevant recent

·           A sample of no more than five pages of a previously published chapter or

Proposers will be notified about whether their submissions are accepted for the book on or before July 15, 2018.   For accepted proposals, first drafts of full chapters (5,000 words) are due by August 20, 2018, and final edited versions are due one month after edited drafts are returned to you. (If the deadlines change, all contributors will be notified immediately.)


No previously published papers will be accepted. No chapters on Anna Julia Cooper will be accepted.


The book will be divided into three major sections, organized chronologically by century: 19th, 20th, and 21st.



19th century

Frances Ellen Watkins Harper

Nancy Gardner Prince



20th century

  • Ida B. Wells-Barnett and Sister Thea Bowman
  • Nannie Helen Burroughs
  • Anna Arnold Hedgeman
  • Madame E. Azalia Hackley
  • Betty Jean Thompson
  • Coretta Scott King


21st century

  • Monica Coleman
  • Patrisse Khan-Cullors
  • SEEKING ONE MORE. Subjects include but are not limited to
    • bell hooks
    • Oprah Winfrey
    • Kimberlé Crenshaw
    • Renita Weems
    • Michelle Obama
    • Michelle Alexander