Dear Colleagues,

In light of the TransAtlantic Slave Trade, having African descended people create a sense of self definition and of God for themselves, appears as nothing short of radical. Whether the women who served as generals within the Kenya Land and Freedom Army, or women like Betty Shabazz who, wrapped in white garments quietly displayed a powerful faith and resistance to White oppression, Black women’s bodies and minds have functioned as sites of resistance to “colonial (White) Christian” norms. Even within Christianity, Black women regularly embrace their ancestral understandings to bring new meaning to Church doctrines and stories.

The African Journal of Gender and Religion, an online, peer reviewed, open-access journal for the transdisciplinary study of gender and religion in Africa, is pleased to announce a new Special Issue entitled, “Black Women’s Radical Religious Faith Traditions: Sacred Scars in Mahogany and Steepled Towers.” Drs. CL Nash, Carol Marie Webster and Geeta Patel are serving as Guest Editors for this issue. You are cordially invited to contribute an article to the Special Issue. Please submit anticipated contributions via email:

Our anticipated schedule of due dates:

Abstracts of up to 300 words, April 1, 2023.

Notification of acceptance, April 21, 2023.

Receipt of accepted papers, July 31, 2023.

Editor revisions, Sept 23, 2023.

Author revisions are due to the guest editors, Oct 16, 2023.

Publication, July 2024.

We are seeking book reviews, journal articles and praxis articles. Book reviews we seek include books: 1) Walking Through the Valley: Womanist Explorations in the Spirit of Katie Geneva Cannon, (Townes, et al, Nov 8 2022; 2) We Are All Witnesses: Toward Disruptive and Creative Biblical Interpretation (Smith and Newheart, 2023). We are also open to reviews of additional texts.

Papers should be 5,000 – 8,000 words including citations. Book reviews should be approximately 3,000 words. We will also accept Praxis articles (see the website, ) and these run 3,000-5,000 words.

Submitted papers should not be under consideration for publication elsewhere. We encourage authors to send an abstract of up to 300 words, with a tentative title in advance.

Papers may include but should not be limited to:

  • Analysis of activist approaches such as Civil Rights struggles as seen in people such as Olive Morris and Fannie Lou Hamer;
  • Interrogation of Biblical texts through an interpretive lens which deliberately challenges Euro-centered interpretations of one or more women in the Bible;
  • Examination of Black women’s lives as sacred texts which constitute radical religious expression;
  • Interrogation of the value of “traditional” African centered religious practices;
  • Amplification of non-Christian religious practices as sites of resistance against White Supremacy and other forms of oppression;
  • Identification and examination of the intersection of gender, class and religion, with religious practices which may cause harm to Black women and practices of self-care that may mitigate these practices;
  • Black women who claim power on the margins of their places of worship, their academic institutions and other forms of resistance that provide an ethical analysis.
  • Religiously … Why is it radical for Black women to define themselves for themselves? Why is Black women’s religious knowledge production still a contested site between Black and White women, in particular? How do Black women create their own epistemological insights in the midst of their unprecedented suffering? How might we see religious patterns of thinking, or threads which create a shared sisterhood for Black women throughout the Diaspora?
  • Theologically … How might Black women, in their varied religious contexts, resist notions of the suffering servant in lieu of communal wholeness? What are the ways that Black women seek the image of God within text, within themselves, within their sisters? What are some of the historical figures of Black women who provide a Christological “centering,” or a centering in how one might best see Black women demonstrating themselves within God’s express image?

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