Losing My Religion: How Organized Religion Continues to Control and Shape Black Women’s Identity

In this conversation between Chris McAuley, Black Studies Collection Editor at Lived Places Publishing and Dr. Kadian Pow, author of Stories of Black Female Identity in the Making: Queering the Love in Blackness, they discuss how religious institutions have maintained their power to shape and control Black women's identities, despite a statistical decline in church attendance.

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  • Kadian Pow, Birmingham City University
  • Chris McAuley, UC Santa Barbara (and Black Studies Collection Editor at Lived Places Publishing)   

The discussion centers around Dr. Pow's recently published book, Stories of Black Female Identity in the Making: Queering the Love in Blackness, which is an exploration of how Black identity is constantly formed and reformed, along with intersections of gender and sexuality. 
The (white) Christian church is undoing rights for minoritized groups and women’s bodily autonomy, and Black women's voices are often left out. This session will talk about Shiny Happy People (2023), a documentary that speaks to the patriarchal control that religious organizations exercise over girls and women’s bodies, minds, and autonomy. Though there were a small number of Black people that were a part of the particular church profiled, none of them were interviewed for the documentary. 

This is but one example of how the impact of organized religion and the patriarchy on Black women's identities is largely missing in the public discourse. Let's aim to change that in this session. 

The session took place on Sept 7, 2023 and was recorded live. 

For notifications of future events and other news about this collection:

Please send questions or inquiries to Michael Boezi at michael [at] lived places publsihing [dot] com 

Michael Boezi

Written by: Michael Boezi

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