Emory’s next Great Teachers Lecture Series event will
feature Teresa Fry Brown of the Candler School of Theology, who
will discuss “Transformative Voices: Speak-ing Liberty and
Justice for All,” on Thursday, Feb. 20, at 7:30 p.m. in Miller-Ward
Fry Brown will examine how public figures speak about gender, race
and ethnicity, and suggest ways to be more careful and more care-filled
in public rhetoric.
“The ways in which we use language in public settings can
sometimes be more oppressive than liberating,” she said. “I’m
going to examine how language currently is used in public sacred
rhetoric and in the political arena and suggest ways to be more
inclusive in how we articulate faith statements.”
Fry Brown said a public example of language that needs to be transformed
is the singing of “God Bless America” in many public
settings in the wake of Sept. 11.
“Implicit in this is the sense that we are asking God to only
bless America and not anything that is not American,” she
said. “We have to consider the language we use and transform
the dialogue so that everyone is affirmed. In processing our values
and backgrounds, we’re all going to say things that are not
socially acceptable, but we need to find a way to seek justice in
Fry Brown is assistant professor of homiletics at Candler, where
she has been a member of the faculty since 1994. Her research interests
include homiletics with an emphasis in African American preaching
styles, church history and womanist theology, ethics, sociology
and history. She is the author of God Don’t Like Ugly:
African American Women Handing on Spiritual Values (Abingdon
Press, 2000). Her second book, Weary Throats and New Songs:
Black Women Proclaiming God’s Word, will be released
by Abingdon in June.
She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in speech
pathology and audiology from Central Missouri State University,
a master of divinity degree from Iliff School of Theology, and a
Ph.D. from Iliff and the University of Denver. She is an ordained
itinerant minister in the African Methodist Episcopal Church, and
serves as the associate pastor of New Bethel African Methodist Episcopal
Church in Lithonia. Prior to enrolling at Iliff, Fry Brown worked
as a speech-language pathologist.
The event is free and open to the public. For more information,
call the Center
for Lifelong Learning at 404-727-6000.