Professor Shanell T. Smith Pens Book for Survivors of Sexual Assault in the Church | Hartford Seminary

Professor Shanell T. Smith Pens Book for Survivors of Sexual Assault in the Church

Shanell T. Smith, Associate Professor of New Testament and Christian Origins and Director of the Cooperative Master of Divinity Program, has written a new book that is available for pre-order.

Touched: For Survivors of Sexual Assault Like Me Who Have Been Hurt by Church Folk and for Those Who Will Care tells the story of Professor Smith’s own personal traumatic experience with sexual violence by a church leader.

Fortress Press says the book “focuses on the responses that [Smith] received from people in the church (clergy and lay folk) once she ‘sounded the alarm.’ These responses either justified, ignored, or denied that the horrific act occurred.

“As a survivor of sexual violence, an ordained minister, and a professor, Smith has heard many stories from other survivors. The circumstances of the sexual assault may differ, but a common thread among them all is the fact that these stories, in one way or another, have often been ignored.

“Touched helps those who have experienced sexual assault give Book Cover for Touched: For Survivors of Sexual Assault Like Me Who Have Been Hurt by Church Folk and for Those Who Will Carethemselves permission to feel what they feel and to find strength to stand up to the counternarratives that come from those who do not understand or deny their trauma. And more, Touched helps readers learn how to respond effectively and compassionately to those who seek refuge and care.”

The book is scheduled for publication in March 2020.

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