Standard Article

African American Theology

  1. Deborah J. Buchanan

Published Online: 25 NOV 2011

DOI: 10.1002/9780470670606.wbecc0162

The Encyclopedia of Christian Civilization

How to Cite

Buchanan, D. J. 2011. African American Theology. The Encyclopedia of Christian Civilization. .

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 25 NOV 2011


Long before the first books on black theology were written, enslaved Africans in America and their descendants sought to articulate their beliefs and understanding of God, and their experience of God in the midst of suffering. Utilizing songs, stories, and other creative means, enslaved Africans delved into theodicy, anthropology, Christology, and other theological themes. The sections below will chronicle the development of black theology in the church, community, and academy; it will also examine the methods, sources and contributions of black theology to Christianity and the field of theology.


  • African American theology;
  • black theology, to Christianity;
  • field of theology;
  • African American pastors, theologian;
  • civil rights, black power movements;
  • black arts movement and black aesthetics;
  • kwanzaa, African American cultural holiday;
  • black church and black community