Women address gender justice for African-Americans

On Martin Luther King Day, more than 50 African-American women working in diverse contexts in the community participated in a “conscientization luncheon” to discuss how gender justice concretely transforms life in the direction of non-alienating experiences for African-American women and the wider environment in which they are situated.

The Richmond campus event was led by Professor of Christian Ethics Katie Geneva Cannon and Adjunct Assistant Professor of Spiritual Formation Paula Owens Parker with the seminary’s Squaring The Womanist Circle Project, a non-profit organization that translates black women’s religious scholarship into community service.

“For over three decades, African-American women religious scholars and theologians have engaged in discourse on race, gender, sexuality and social class,” said Cannon. “Yet, a consistent criticism is that our womanist work as academicians is separated from our labor as scholar-practitioners who address issues and needs throughout the black community.”

Conscientization is the action or process of making others aware of political and social conditions, especially as a precursor to challenging inequalities of treatment or opportunity; the fact of being aware of these conditions.

In April, Cannon and Parker will lead a workshop with UPSem’s Leadership Institute that will assess and redress the muted, masked, and mangled testimonies, and the trans-generational experiences of women, men, and children whose ancestors were enslaved Africans. Earlybird registration ends February 27.

See more pictures of the luncheon.