Sarah Azaransky

Assistant Professor of Social Ethics


3041 Broadway, AD 414
New York, NY 10027


B.A., Swarthmore College
M.T.S., Harvard Divinity School
Ph.D., University of Virginia


Sarah Azaransky is assistant professor of social ethics. Her research and teaching examine historical and contemporary experiences of race and sexualities and their intersections in the United States.

Her forthcoming book, This Worldwide Struggle: Religion and the International Roots of the Civil Rights Movement (Oxford University Press, June 2017) identifies a network of black Christian intellectuals and activists who looked abroad, even in other religious traditions, for ideas and practices that could transform American democracy. From the 1930s to the 1950s, they drew lessons from independence movements around for the world for an American racial justice campaign. The book reveals fertile intersections of worldwide resistance movements, American racial politics, and interreligious exchanges that crossed literal borders and disciplinary boundaries. These black Christian intellectuals developed religious perspectives and methods of moral reasoning that became theological blueprints for the later Civil Rights Movement.

Dr. Azaransky’s other publications include The Dream is Freedom: Pauli Murray and American Democratic Faith (Oxford University Press, 2011), an edited volume Religion and Politics in America’s Borderlands (Lexington, 2013), as well as articles in Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics, Black Theology: An International Journal, and Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion.

Dr. Azaransky earned her B.A. at Swarthmore College with a major in Religion in 1998. As a Watson Fellow, she conducted research on cross-community women’s peace organizing in Northern Ireland, Israel and the West Bank, and Sri Lanka in 1998-1998. She received her Master of Theological Studies from Harvard in 2001 and her Ph.D. from the University of Virginia in 2007. Before joining the Union faculty, she taught in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of San Diego.

Recent Courses

Religious and Sexual Legacies of Slavery (Fall 2016)
Christian Ethics of Immigration and the Borderlands (Fall 2016)
Sexual Ethics in New York City (Fall 2017)
Moral Crisis of White Supremacy (Fall 2017)
Postcolonial Christian Ethics (Spring 2018)
Political and Social Thought: Freedom and Justice (Spring 2018)