Stephanie A. Martin

Corporate Communication and Public Affairs

Associate Professor





Stephanie A. (Sam) Martin is a scholar of public address and political communication, with a particular interest in the public discourses of conservative social movements, especially evangelical voters. She has written or edited three books, most prominently Decoding the Digital Church: Evangelical Storytelling and the Election of Donald J. Trump (University of Alabama Press, 2021). Her research has also been published in top journals including the Quarterly Journal of Speech, Rhetoric and Public Affairs and Visual Communication Quarterly. Martin frequently appears as an expert commentator and consultant for news stories, and has appeared in USA Today, NPR, NBC, the Boston Globe, the Texas Tribune, and The Dallas Morning News, among others.

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Ph.D., Communication, University of California, San Diego
M.A., Journalism, Syracuse University (Newhouse School)
B.B.A., Production and Operations Management, Boise State University

Recent Work

Representative Publications


Decoding the Digital Church: Megachurch Storytelling and the Election of Donald J. Trump, (Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press), 2021. Named 2021 “Book of the Year” by Word & Way

Columns to Characters: The Presidency and the Press Enter the Digital Age – Texas A&M Press

Visual Ethics: A Guide for Photographers, Journalists and Filmmakers – Routledge, by Paul Martin Lester with Stephanie A. Martin and Martin Smith-Rodden

Journal Articles

Recession Resonance: How Evangelical Megachurch Pastors Promoted Fiscal Conservatism in the Aftermath of the 2008 Financial Crash – Rhetoric & Public Affairs, Spring 2015

Dada in the Public Square: Police, Protest, and Creative Dissent – 2017 Special Issue

Popular Media Appearances

Media Writing

In the wake of tragedy, Trump takes rhetoric of fear to a whole new level – The Conversation (with Dr. Christopher Salinas)

Media Appearances

Have Evangelical Voting Patterns Changed? KERA’s Friday Conversation

Younger voters ‘don’t have same sense of achievement’ with Clinton

SMU professor on Tuesday election expectations

Reading Between The Tweets: Covering The White House In The Social Media Age

Course list

Free speech  
First Amendment  
Political communication  
Stephanie A. Martin