Story+ Project

#MyVoiceMyBody: Minoritized Bodies in the Pulpit at Duke Chapel



Ordination of women continues to remain a controversial issue in numerous Christian denominations. In 1939, Duke Chapel welcomed its first woman preacher (Georgia Harkness), paving way for more than 75 illustrious women preachers who guest-preached or served as associate ministers to Duke Chapel between 1963 to 2001. Who were they? What did they preach? How did they preach? 

2019 Story+ project #MyVoiceMyBody will interrogate the intersections of body, place, and performance in the space of Duke Chapel. Students will work with the archival and digital contents of the Duke Chapel Recordings Digital Collection, conduct in-person/digital interviews with these pioneering women, and learn the basics of sermon analysis to reveal the connections between identity, rhetoric, and politics. From this research, students will craft a creative multimedia presentation.

Skills required 

  • Audio & Video Editing
  • Writing 
  • Collaborative teamwork
  • Storytelling/Interviewing Skills
  • Working with Primary Sources in the archive
Project Sponsor(s): 

Dr. Jerusha Neal, Assistant Professor of Homiletics, Duke Divinity School

Graduate Mentor(s): 

Peace Lee, ThD candidate in Homiletics at Duke Divinity School


Nicholas Simmons, Sarah Xu, Ami Wong


The #MyVoiceMyBody: Minoritized Bodies in the Pulpit at Duke Chapel team will continue as a Bass Connections project for the 2019-2020 term! You can see more and follow updates here:

The #MyVoiceMyBody team was also profiled for Duke Today. You can read that story here: "Story+: Where Humanities Students Combine Creative Storytelling and Research".

Scholar, Preacher, and Activist Rev. Dr. Eboni Marshall Turman preaching at Duke Chapel on Feb (12th) 2017


  • Oral History
  • Civil Rights
  • Archives
  • Education