Karen Swallow Prior

Karen Swallow Prior

Karen Swallow Prior

Research Professor of English and Christianity and Culture

Discipline: English
Teaching Since: 1989
Area: College Faculty
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CONTACT Karen Swallow Prior


B.A. Daemen College 1987
M.A. SUNY Buffalo 1991
Ph.D. SUNY Buffalo, 1999


Dr. Prior taught English at Liberty University for 21 years before coming to SEBTS in 2020. She writes frequently on literature and cultural issues. She and her husband Roy have been married since 1985 and are members of Thomas Road Baptist Church in Lynchburg, Virginia, where they reside.


The Abstract of Principles has served as a guiding document since Southeastern’s founding. In April 2001, Trustees revised the institutional bylaws to include the 2000 revision of the Baptist Faith and Message along with the Abstract of Principles as the official articles of faith for the school. Since then, faculty have been asked to state in writing that these documents represent their personal beliefs without mental hesitation or reservation and they committed themselves to teach in accordance with and not contrary to these statements of faith.

In addition to the articles of faith, Southeastern further recognizes two documents that clarify beliefs on critical issues. The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy reflects Southeastern’s commitment to biblical authority. The Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood addresses the issue of biblical manhood and womanhood. These documents serve as guidelines and affirmations of convictions and beliefs that are already expressed in Southeastern’s statement of faith. Members of the Faculty commit to teach in accordance with and not contrary to the doctrines expressed in these documents.

The faculty of Southeastern published the booklet, “Here we stand! This We Believe!” to introduce the statements of faith signed by the faculty and the affirmation statements endorsed by the faculty. The fifth document in the booklet is the Nashville Statement, which is not a formally recognized document of the school but expresses the position of the school on gender and sexuality.