A Pursued Justice

“Kenyatta R. Gilbert offers readers a definitive analysis of the prophetic wisdom, witness, and worth of Black Preaching during the mass exodus of African Americans who moved off of sharecropping plantations and out of the South, beginning in 1910. In A Pursued Justice, Dr. Gilbert makes a forceful argument, backed up by insightful homiletical discourse, about the sacred rhetoric that sustained Black Christians who left the familiar and signed up for a ‘justice ticket’ in search of jobs and freedom.”

Katie G. Cannon, Annie Scales Rogers Professor of Christian Ethics, Union Presbyterian Seminary

“For far too long, the genius of Black preaching has been relegated to the delivery and performance of sermons alone. Gilbert skillfully shows us that prophetic preaching is not just what a preacher says but also what a preacher does in struggling communities to concretize and incarnate the social indictments of prophetic rhetoric.”

Gary V. Simpson, Senior Pastor, The Concord Baptist Church of Christ, Brooklyn, NY

“this is an informative and at times inspirational book which in places is adorned with some of the rhetorical beauty which Gilbert attributes to others.”

Stuart Blythe, Baptistic Theologies

“In both form and content, A Pursued Justice is a breakthrough work of practical theology and rhetorical analysis. If audience reception follows quality of content, it deservedly will enjoy multiple rounds of printing and critical acclaim.”

Rev. Andrew Wilkes, Sojourners

“With historical and biblical analytic precision, Gilbert sounds a clarion call for a return to prophetic Black preaching. While the primary audience for A Pursued Justice is the Black pulpit, its applicability to the pew and beyond is undeniable.”

J. B. Blue, Homiletic

“With this revealing account of sermonic oratory by women and men in African American Protestantism, Gilbert has advanced understanding of social justice preaching and the sundry challenges against which it has emerged.”


“An eloquent, learned, and concise introduction to the social and homiletical phenomenon of the Great Migration.”

Richard Lischer, The Christian Century

“Gilbert’s book will be useful for seminary study and for pastors who engage in lifelong learning. In addition to Gilbert’s interesting thesis and analysis of preaching in context, the book contains numerous sermon texts for reading and study.”

Mikael Broadway, Horizons