My research examines the racial afterlife of Christian theological concepts and how they structure the terms in which we imagine our intimate and public lives.

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Amaryah Shaye Armstrong

Interdisciplinary Scholar of Race, Religion, and Sexuality


2019Vanderbilt University
Ph.D. in Religion
2012Emory University, Candler School of Theology
M.T.S. in Systematic Theology
2010Belmont University
B.A. in English Literature

Academic Appointments

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

Assistant Professor of Race in American Religion and Culture

August 2019­–Present

Grants, Fellowships, and Honors

2020Inaugural Juneteenth Scholar, Virginia Tech
2019-2022Faculty Fellow, Virginia Tech Center for Humanities, 2020-2022
2019Early Career Scholar, Society for the Study of Religion Ethnicity and Race, 2019
2014–2019Provost Fellow, Vanderbilt University
2018Doctoral Dissertation Workshop, Political Theology Network, AAR 2018
2018-2019Dissertation Fellowship, American Studies Fellow, Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities, Vanderbilt University
2018-2019Dissertation Fellowship, Louisville Institute
2018-2019Dissertation Fellowship for Students of African Descent, Forum for Theological Exploration [Declined]
2017AAR Doctoral Fellowship, Political Theology Mentoring Network
2017Graduate Student Colloquium Participant, The Barth Center, Princeton Theological Seminary
2017–2018Doctoral Fellowship for Students of African Descent, Forum for Theological Exploration
2017Udo Keller Stiftung Forum Humanum Grant, Claremont Philosophy of Religion Conference
2016–2018Doctoral Fellow, Louisville Institute
2015Trinity Institute, Creating Common Good Essay Competition, Runner-Up ($2,500 Award)
2015Fellow: FTE Christian Leadership Forum, The Forum for Theological Exploration
2012Myki Mobley Award for Academic Achievement and Demonstrated Social Concern, The Candler School of Theology
2012Vernon Johns Award for Prophetic Scholarship and Leadership, The Candler School of Theology
2010Fellow: Nurturing the Next Generation of Scholars, The Fund for Theological Education, AAR Workshop
2010Alfred Leland Crabb University Writing Award, Belmont University
2010Corinne Dale Award for Achievement in Writing About Gender, Belmont University
2009-2010 2007-2008Dean’s List, Belmont University



Domestic Theologies: Race, Reproduction, and the Afterlife of Christian Order (In Preparation)

Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles

  1. “Black Culture and the Apocalyptic Political Theology of W.E.B. Du Bois” | Black Theology: An International Journal (Forthcoming)
  2. “Surrogate Flesh: Race, Redemption, and the Cultural Production of Fetal Personhood” | Journal of Ecumenical Studies, (Forthcoming)
  3. “Thinking Practice: Method, Pedagogy, Power and the Question of a Black Queer Theology” | Editor of Special Issue of Modern Believing, “Method, Pedagogy, and Power”on Black Queer Religious Thought (January 2019)
  4. “Of Flesh and Spirit: Race, Reproduction, and Sexual Difference in the Turn to Paul” | Journal for Cultural and Religious Theory 16, no.2 (Spring 2017): 126–141.
  5.  “The Spirit and the Subprime: Race, Risk, and Our Common Dispossession” | Anglican Theological Review 98, no. 1 (Winter 2016): 51–69.

Essays and Popular Writing

  1. “Bound History: The Predicament of the Black Evangelical Imagination” | A Response to Jemar Tisby’s The Color of Compromise: The Truth About the American Church’s Complicity in Racism | Syndicate Network (June 2020)
  2. “Racial Order and Christian Order: What Cedric Robinson Has to Teach Us Today” | The Bias Magazine, Institute for Christian Socialism (June 2020)
  3. “Unsovereign Love: Thoughts on Race, Sex, and Undoing an Evangelical Education of Feeling” | The Revealer (February 2020)
  4. “Reading the Flesh: Otherwise Methodologies and the Possibility of Black Theology” | A Response to Ashon Crawley’s Blackpentecostal Breath: The Aesthetics of Possibility | Syndicate Network (October 2017)
  5. “James Cone and the Blackness of God” | The Other Journal (Summer 2016)
  6. “It gets better: Gay identity as national progress” | Geez Magazine (Spring 2013)
  7. “Must I be anarchist?” | Geez Magazine (Winter 2012)

Book Chapters

  1. “James Hal Cone,” and “Black Theology,” in The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, edited by Andrew Louth. Oxford; Oxford University Press (forthcoming)

Book Reviews

  1. “Reconceiving Infertility” by Candida R. Moss and Joel S. Baden | Reading Religion, A Publication of the American Academy of Religion (February 2018)
  2.  “The Prince of This World” by Adam Kotsko | Anglican Theological Review, 99, no. 3 (Summer 2017): 619–622.
  3. “Our Lives Matter: a Womanist Queer Theology” by Pamela Lightsey | Journal of Theology & Sexuality 22, no. 3 (2016): 181–82.
  4. “A Queering of Black Theology: James Baldwin’s Blues Project and Gospel Prose.” by E.L. Kornegay | Journal of Theology & Sexuality 20, no. 3 (2014): 263–65.
  5. “Ain’t I a Womanist Too?: Third Wave Womanist Religious Thought” edited by Monica Coleman | Journal of Theology & Sexuality 20, no. 2 (2014): 151–53.


  1. Journal External Referee: Political Theology, Feminist Studies in Religion,
  2. Guest Editor | Special Issue of Modern Believing, “Method, Pedagogy, and Power”on Black Queer Religious Thought (January 2019)
  3. Editorial Advisor | The A-Line Journal | Edited by Hortense Spillers and Rich Blint
  4. Editorial Review Board | Reframing Continental Philosophy of Religion | Book Series, Rowman & Littlefield International
  5. Editorial Assistant | Break Every Yoke (Oxford UP), by Joshua Dubler and Vincent Lloyd | Proofreading, Suggesting Revisions, and Completing Footnotes
  6. Book Symposium Organizer | Black Natural Law by Vincent Lloyd, Syndicate Symposium | Syndicate Network (Spring 2017)
  7. Composition Assistant | Scribe, Inc. Philadelphia, PA (April 2013–May 2014)

Teaching and Research Experience

Virginia Tech

  • Religion and Literature | “Generations: Religion and the Fiction of Kinship”
  • Introduction to American Studies | “The Politics of Domesticity”
  • Race and Gender in Religion and Culture | “Reproducing Blackness”
  • Race and Gender in Religion and Culture | “Reproducing Peoplehood”

Vanderbilt University

  • Teaching Assistant | Reformation History with Paul Lim | Vanderbilt Divinity School (Spring 2018)
  • Teaching Assistant | Constructive Christian Theology I with Ellen Armour | Vanderbilt Divinity School (Fall 2017)
  • Teaching Assistant | Contemporary Christian Theology | with Laurel Schneider | Vanderbilt University (Fall 2016)
  • Teaching Assistant | Constructive Christian Theology I with Ellen Armour | Vanderbilt Divinity School (Fall 2015)
  • Teaching Assistant | Constructive Christian Theology II with Paul DeHart | Vanderbilt Divinity School (Spring 2015)

Independent Research Assistance

  • Research Assistant | Forthcoming Manuscript, “Break Every Yoke,” by Vincent Lloyd (Villanova University) and Joshua Dubler (Rochester University) (Summer 2016)
  • Co-Organizer | Race, Property, Debt Symposium with Vincent Lloyd | University of Wisconsin, Madison (March 2016)

Emory University

  • Research Assistant | Andrea White | Candler School of Theology, Emory University (2011–2012)
  • Research Assistant | Ian McFarland | Candler School of Theology, Emory University (2011–2012)