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Call Text:

The Black Theology Unit invites individual papers and panel submissions on the topics identified below and proposals on additional topics of interest that advance the discipline of Black theology. In this call for papers, we invite submissions that explore black theological discourse through topics such as:

Black Theology and decolonial (anti-colonial) methods
Black Theology, black nationalism, white nationalism
Black Theology, Trumpism, neo-fascism
Black Theology and black bodies, Covid-19
Black Theology and mass incarceration
Black Theology and the censoring of Black religious scholarship in the academy
Black Theology as Ecotheology
Black Theology, black women, electoral politics and public life
Black theology, Marxist analysis, and economic stratification in the Black community

We also invite papers that:

1.       Examine fifty years of Teología de la Liberación – Examining Gustavo Gutiérrez’s influence and the task of the liberation of theology. In 1971 Gustavo Gutiérrez published the article “Hacia Una Teología de la Liberación”, followed by one of the most influential books of the 20th century, Teología de la Liberación: Perspectivas. To mark this year of celebrations, reflections, and conversations on this important anniversary we invite proposals that creatively engage Gutiérrez’s work from a variety of interdisciplinary lenses and contexts. We especially invite proposals that bring Gutiérrez’s contributions in contact with current challenges and future visions of the liberation of theology and theologies that seek to liberate, including problematizing the meaning(s) and praxis of liberation across the theological disciplines. (co-sponsored roundtable by Black Theology Unit, and Class, Religion, and Theology Unit, and Latina/o Religion, Culture, and Society Unit, and Liberation Theologies Unit, and Religion and Economy Unit, Religions in the Latina/o Americas Unit, Catholic Studies Unit, Vatican II Studies Unit)

2.       Consider theologies and ideologies that resist social inequalities and re-imagine different worlds and other futures. We seek proposals that place King in dialogue with a Black Social Gospel tradition and the rise of the spiritual left. The most recent Georgia senatorial race, for example, put on display a Black Social Gospel theology as performed in the ministry and politics of Rev. Raphael Warnock, who pastors a church once led by King. Issues such as universal healthcare, worker’s rights, political disenfranchisement, and equal education standards, are deemed as “radical” by the so-called “Christian right.” We invite papers to consider the “radical” and the “extreme” in the thought of Martin Luther King, Jr. How might reading King in the Black Social Gospel tradition and the spiritual left lend insight into a theology that imagines our collective future? We invite papers to reflect creatively on this theme and take up a host of issues that shed light on new ways of reading the Black Social Gospel and the spiritual left. (co-sponsored by Ethics Unit and Theology of Martin Luther King Jr. Unit)

Proposals have a much greater chance of acceptance if they make clear the central thesis and main line(s) of argument of the proposed paper.


Mission Statement:

This Unit seeks to further develop Black theology as an academic enterprise. In part, this is accomplished by providing opportunities for exchanges related to basic issues of Black theology’s content and form. In addition, the Unit seeks to broaden conversation by bringing Black theology into dialogue with other disciplines and perspectives on various aspects of African diasporic religious thought and life.

Method of Submission:




Jawanza Eric Clark, jawanza.clark@manhattan.edu

Eboni Marshall Turman, eboni.marshallturman@yale.edu


Steering Committee:

Amey Victoria Adkins-Jones, amey.adkins@bc.edu

Amaryah Shaye Armstrong, amaryah@vt.edu

Adam Clark, clarkadam@xavier.edu

Michele Watkins, mwatkins@sandiego.edu

Andrea C. White, awhite@uts.columbia.edu


Session Allotment: Tier 2 – Two 2-hour sessions

Next Review: 2023