Vaughn Booker Chosen As Young Scholar in American Religion

Professor Vaughn Booker has been chosen by the Center for the Study of Religion and American Culture to be a 2019 Young Scholar in American Religion. One of only ten scholars, Booker will receive support for teaching and research. He will have opportunities for mentoring from leading scholars in the field, collaboration with expert researchers, and involvement in scholarly initiatives.

Vaughn A. Booker is Assistant Professor in the Department of Religion and the Program in African and African American Studies at Dartmouth College. His research focuses on African American religious history in the twentieth century. His first book, Lift Every Voice and Swing: Black Artistry and Religious Movement in the Jazz Century (under contract with New York University Press), explores the emergence of new race representatives in the jazz profession. The expressions of belief, practice, and unconventional positions of religious authority for these women and men reveal how they fostered a new arena and spokespersons for African American religious influence beyond traditional Afro-Protestant institutions and religious life. His second book project will center irreverence as a mode of religious belonging in African American history.

The Center for the Study of Religion and American Culture

The Center for the Study of Religion and American Culture was established in 1989 to explore the connection between religion and other aspects of American culture. They are a research and public outreach institute that supports the ongoing scholarly discussion of the nature, terms, and dynamics of religion in America. As a program of the IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI, the Center pursues its aim as part of the mission of liberal and humane learning. It seeks to elevate among students, faculty, and the larger American public the understanding of the influence of religion in the lives of people. The next generation of leading teachers and scholars in American religion is at work in our colleges and universities today.

With support from Lilly Endowment, the Center assists these early career scholars in the improvement of their teaching and research and in the development of professional communities through the Young Scholars in American Religion program. In addition to its historic concentration on teaching and research, the Young Scholars Program now includes a seminar devoted to such other professional issues as constructing a tenure portfolio, publication, grant writing, and department politics.