Soul food has played a critical role in preserving Black history, community, and culinary genius. It is also a response to–and marker of–centuries of food injustice. Given the harm that our food production system inflicts upon Black people, what should soul food look like today?

Christopher Carter’s answer to that question merges a history of Black American foodways with a Christian ethical response to food injustice. Carter reflects on how people of color can eat in a way that reflects their cultural identities while remaining true to the principles of compassion, love, justice, and solidarity with the marginalized.

Accompanying the lecture will be three different soul foods, based on Dr. Carter’s recipes, that attendees will share: red beans and rice, vegan cornbread, and peach crisp.

Christopher Carter is an assistant professor of theology and religious studies at the University of San Diego. He is also a pastor within the United Methodist Church and has served churches in Battle Creek, Michigan, and in Torrance and Compton, California.


Rev. Dr. Christopher Carter’s research, teaching, and activist interests are in Black, Womanist, and Environmental ethics, with a particular focus on race, food, and nonhuman animals. His publications include The Spirit of Soul Food (University of Illinois Press, December 2021), “Blood in the Soil: The Racial, Racist, and Religious Dimensions of Environmentalism” in The Bloomsbury Handbook on Religion and Nature (Bloomsbury, 2018) and the co-edited volume The Future of Meat Without Animals (Rowman & Littlefield, 2016). In them, he explores the intersectional oppressions experienced by people of color, non-human nature, and animals. Currently he is an Associate Professor of Theology at the University of San Diego, Lead Pastor of The Loft at Westwood United Methodist Church, and he is also on the board of directors of Farm Forward, an anti-factory farming non-profit.

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