Ellen Ott Marshall

Associate Professor of Christian Ethics and Conflict Transformation
Ellen Ott Marshall
Phone: 404.727.1214
    • PhD, Vanderbilt University, 2000
    • MA, Vanderbilt University, 1996
    • MA, University of Notre Dame, 1992
    • BA, Davidson College, 1991

    Prior to joining the Candler faculty in 2009, Dr. Ellen Ott Marshall worked with the refugee resettlement programs of Church World Service and the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) and served as the lead writer for God's Renewed Creation, a pastoral letter and foundation document for the United Methodist Church Council of Bishops. 

    Marshall’s work focuses on contemporary Christian ethics, with particular attention to violence, peacebuilding, and conflict transformation. She is also interested in questions about gender and moral agency, and the dynamic relationship between faith, history and ethics. Marshall is the author of three books and the editor of two, and has published essays on welfare reform, the use of film to teach ethics, and the United Methodist response to war. Her most recent book, Introduction to Christian Ethics (Westminster John Knox, 2018) explores the question: how do we live a good life in the midst of ongoing conflict?

    As a teacher, scholar and practitioner, Marshall strives to facilitate clarity of thought, transparent and honest discussion, mutual understanding, and respectful disagreement. She is deeply committed to fostering practices of careful moral discernment and civil conversation, especially when hot button issues are in play.

    Marshall co-convenes the Religion, Conflict, and Peacebuilding Initiative for Emory’s Graduate Division of Religion. She also serves as the Co-Chair for the Religion, Social Conflict, and Peace Group of the American Academy of Religion, and on task forces for The United Methodist Church and the National Council of Churches.

    In 2011, Marshall received Candler’s “On Eagle’s Wings” Excellence in Teaching Award for faithful and dedicated service, and in 2013, she won the Candler “Faculty Person of the Year” award. In 2015, she was awarded the Emory Williams Teaching Award, the highest teaching award granted by the university.

    Selected publications

    • Faculty Publication
    • Faculty Publication
    • Faculty Publication


    Introduction to Christian Ethics: Conflict, Faith, and Human Life. Westminster John-Knox Press, 2018

    Editor,Conflict Transformation and Religion: Essays on Faith, Power, and Relationship. Palgrave, 2016.

    Christians in the Public Square: Faith that Transforms Politics. Abingdon Press, 2008.

    Though the Fig Tree Does Not Blossom: Toward a Responsible Theology of Christian Hope. Abingdon Press, 2006.

    Contributing Editor,Choosing Peace through Daily Practices. Pilgrim Press, 2005.

    Chapters and Articles

    "Conflict, God, and Constructive Change: Exploring Prominent Christian Convictions in the Work of Conflict Transformation." Brethren Life and Thought, vol. 61, no. 2, 2016

    "War, Revolution, and Peace in the Twenty-First Century." Religion and Ethics in the Twenty-First Century, Anselm Academic Publishing, 2013

    "Psalm 91" and "Isaiah 53:4-12." Feasting on the Word, Year B, Additional Essays, Westminster John Knox Press, 2011

    "A Matter of Pride: A Feminist Response to Billy Graham." The Legacy of Billy Graham, Westminster John Knox Press, 2008

    "Teaching Ethics with Film: A Course on the Moral Agency of Women." Teaching Religion and Film, Oxford University Press, 2008

    "United Methodist Witness in Times of War: Five Characteristics." Quarterly Review, vol. 24, no. 1, General Board of Higher Education and Ministry and The United Methodist Publishing House, 2004

    "Liberation from the Welfare Trap?" Welfare Policy: Feminist Critiques, Pilgrim Press, 1999

    Selected awards

    Provost¿s Distinguished Teaching Award for Excellent in Graduate and Professional Education for the Laney Graduate School, Emory University, 2019

    Emory Williams Distinguished Teaching Award, Emory University

    Faculty Person of the Year Award, Candler School of Theology

    "On Eagle's Wings" Excellence in Teaching Award, Candler School of Theology

    Grant for "Peace and Justice Studies Consultation," Regions Committee of the American Academy of Religion, 2006-2006.

    Summer Research Grant, Wabash Center for Teaching and Learning in Theology and Religion

    College Life "Advisor Award," Elizabethtown College, 2001-2002.

    Exceptional Performance Award for teaching, research, and service, Elizabethtown College

    Marshall worked with the refugee resettlement program of Church World Service and the United Methodist Committee on Relief before pursuing her PhD. She maintains this interest in refugee ministry today as the chair of the advisory board for New American Pathways, working with Candler's contextual education sites in Clarkston, and volunteering with the refugee ministry of her church.

    Service of Word, Cannon Chapel, March 8, 2018

    "I Believe in Your Religion" - 2018 Interfaith Workshop for Christian Clergy, January 29, 2018

    Q& A with Ellen Ott Marshall: What is "responsible hope"? - Faith & Leadership, July 24, 2018

    Service of Word, Cannon Chapel, September 8, 2016

    "Welcoming the Sojourner" - Candler Practical Ministry Webinars, February 9, 2016

    "Practicing Conflict Transformation" - Candler Practical Ministry Webinars, December 8, 2015

    "Resisting Interruption, Returning to the Story" - JustPeace, September 23, 2015

    Service of Word, Cannon Chapel, September 10, 2015

    "Affirmation and Accountability: Ethical Dimensions of 'That Blessed Image'" - Prophetic Voices Centennial Academic Conference, Cannon Chapel, March 19, 2015

    Service of Word, Cannon Chapel, October 9, 2014

    Selected courses

    Skills in Conflict Transformation

    Contemporary Christian Ethics

    Feminist and Womanist Ethics

    Introduction to Christian Ethics

    Religion, Violence and Peacebuilding                               

    Voices of Nonviolence

    Coursera Course: Conflict Transformation