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Daniel Overton Faculty Profile

Daniel Overton

Assistant Professor of Communication
Communication Division, Seaver College
CCB 260


Daniel is assistant professor of communication in Pepperdine University's Seaver College. After graduating from Freed-Hardeman University, Daniel worked as a full-time congregational minister for a church plant near Memphis, TN for nearly six years, and he earned a Master of Divinity and Master of Arts in Historical Theology from the Harding School of Theology during that time. He completed his doctor of philosophy in communication studies at the University of Kansas, specializing in rhetoric. Prior to joining the faculty at Pepperdine in 2018, he served as assistant professor for his alma mater Freed-Hardeman in his home state of Tennessee. Currently, he teaches courses focusing on rhetoric, leadership, and public speaking. As a historian and critic of American public address, Daniel's research focuses on the use of constitutive and prophetic rhetorics to gain and motivate large audiences to effective collective action in a variety of activist, political, and ecclesial contexts. He is married to Elaine, and together they have two mostly delightful daughters and one dog.


  • PhD in Communication Studies: Rhetoric, University of Kansas
  • MA in Historical Theology, Harding School of Theology
  • MDiv, Harding School of Theology
  • BA, Freed-Hardeman University
  • Overton, Daniel. "Explosion of Meaning: The Complexity of Context and Language." In Communication in the Classroom: A Collection of Great Ideas for Teaching Students. Edited by John S. Seiter, Jennifer Peeples, and Matthew L. Sanders, 199-202. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2018.
  • Overton, Daniel. "How to Build an Army: The Constitutive Utopian Rhetoric of Julius Wayland in the Appeal to Reason." PhD Diss., University of Kansas, 2017.
  • Overton, Daniel. "Review of Confessional Crises and Cultural Politics in Twentieth-Century America by Dave Tell." Southern Communication Journal, 80.2 (2015): 153-5.
  • Editorial Board, Western Journal of Communication, 2018-Present
  • Robert N. Bostrom Young Scholar Award, Southern States Communication Association, 2016
  • E.C. Buehler Award and Fellowship for Outstanding Teaching, University of Kansas, 2015
  • Academic Awards for ranking first in class during M.Div. and M.A. programs, Harding School of Theology, 2014
  • Overton, Daniel. "Pacifism after Pearl Harbor: Foy E. Wallace Jr. Changes His Mind," paper presented at the Christian Scholars Conference, Nashville, TN, June 2018.
  • Overton, Daniel. "What Has Montgomery to Do with Vietnam?: The Prophetic Call Form as a Rhetorical Resource in King's 'Beyond Vietnam' Address," paper presented at the Southern States Communication Association Conference, Nashville, TN, April 2018. (Awarded Top Paper History of Rhetoric Division)
  • Overton, Daniel. "Alvin York as a Rhetorically Muted Figure," paper presented at Remembering Muted Voices Symposium, National World War One Museum and Memorial, Kansas City, MO, October 2017.
  • Overton, Daniel. "How to Build an Army: The Constitution of Julius Wayland's Militant Counterpublic," paper presented at Biennial Rhetoric Society of America Conference, Atlanta, GA, May 2016.


  • Rhetoric
  • Public Speaking
  • Rhetorical Leadership
  • Hermeneutics
  • American Civil Rights Movement
  • American Christianity