The Role of Women in the History of the Black Church (video)

Original Title

Thursday morning, continued. Continuation of Stokes presentation; response (most of it) by Cecilia Bryant

Streaming Media

Media is loading


Society for the Study of Black Religion Collection

Document Type


Date Information


Playing Time



Dr. Stokes gives a historical overview of the Black church’s development from slavery to 1979. Dr. Stokes highlights the role of the Black woman during this period of development. She discusses Black women’s support of Black preachers and Black church efforts to establish Historical Black Colleges and Universities. She also discusses how Black churches in the American North served as a place of emotional release from racism and oppression and was a socio political center to aid in the struggle against lynching and the fight for equality. Cecilia Bryant gives a response to Dr. Stokes lecture presentation. Bryant challenges Black church pastoring in what she believes is its failure to touch base with Black womanhood.

File Name



00:00:06 Dr. Stokes woman talks about nature of Black worship and emotionalism.

00:01:02 Talks about the rise of Black preachers such as “Black Henry,” who traveled with Methodist Bishop Asbury.

00:01:43 Talks about how the Black preacher kept alive the aspiration among Black people and how the Black preacher made religion the people ground of hope.

00:02:17 Talks about how the African culture is a male dominated culture and how the Black woman is very supportive of her male including the preacher.

00:02:47 Talks about Sojourner Truth being representative of Black church women.

00:09:11 Talks about 3rd period in history called “Emancipation and Negro Education”. The formation of Black educational institutions and the Black woman’s role.

00:15:55 Talks about 4th period (1915-1941) called “The Movement North”, and how Blacks moved north for better income and better lives.

00:16:57 Talks about the new industrialized lifestyle required family adjustments and the Black church moved north with it and became second home for Black families to deal with adjustments of north.

00:21:08 Talks about the 5th period called “The Organization and Growth of the Black Churches” (1942-1960).

00:30:47 Talks about 6th period (1960-1979) called “Backward Glance and Forward Thrust”.

00:50:01 Cecilia Bryant woman gives response and identified six primary points of Dr. Stokes.

00:52:30 Says that Black women are not visible to themselves and how something is operative in the Black Church belief system that fails to make contact with Black women at the point of their womanhood.

00:52:29 Raises the question concerning pastoring. She says what kind of pastoring is being done to us when Black women never touch base with the fact that they are women?

01:03:31 Video ends.


The Atlanta University Center Robert W. Woodruff Library acknowledges the generous support of the National Endowment for Humanities - Humanities Collections and Reference Resources Implementation Project Grant in supporting the processing and digitization of a number of its major archival collections as part of the project: Spreading the Word: Expanding Access to African American Religious Archival Collections at the Atlanta University Center Robert W. Woodruff Library.


All video content in this collection is protected by copyright or is the property of the Robert W. Woodruff Library of the Atlanta University Center, Inc., and/or the copyright holder as appropriate. For more information or to inquire about permission to publish, please contact archives@auctr.edu.



Rights Statement

In Copyright - Educational Use Permitted.