School of Humanities and Sciences
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Martin Luther King, Jr. Centennial Professor and Associate Professor of Religious Studies
BioLerone A. Martin is the Martin Luther King, Jr., Centennial Professor in Religious Studies and Director of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute at Stanford University.
Previously, he was a member of the faculty in the John C. Danforth Center on Religion and Politics and Director of American Culture Studies at Washington University in Saint Louis
Martin is the author of the award-winning Preaching on Wax: The Phonograph and the Making of Modern African American Religion (New York University Press, 2014). The book received the 2015 first book award by the American Society of Church History.
In support of his research, Martin has received a number of nationally recognized fellowships, including the National Endowment for the Humanities, The American Council of Learned Societies, The Institute for Citizens and Scholars (formerly The Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation), The Teagle Foundation, Templeton Religion Trust, the Louisville Institute for the Study of American Religion, and the Forum for Theological Exploration.
Most recently, Martin became Co-Director of $1 million grant from the Henry Luce Foundation to fund “The Crossroads Project,” a four-year, multi-institution project to advance public understanding of the history, politics, and cultures of African American religions.
He has also been recognized for his teaching, receiving institutional teaching awards as well as fellowships from the Wabash Center for Teaching and Learning in Theology and Religion.
His commentary and writing have been featured on The New York Times, Boston Globe, CNN, CSPAN, Newsy, NBCLX, and PBS as well as and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He also serves as an advisor on the upcoming PBS documentary series The History of Gospel Music & Preaching.
His next book, The Gospel of J. Edgar Hoover: How the FBI Aided and Abetted the Rise of White Christian Nationalism will be released in February 2023 by Princeton University Press.
Assistant Professor of Religious Studies and, by courtesy, of East Asian Languages and Cultures
BioMichaela Mross specializes in Japanese Buddhism, with a particular emphasis on Sōtō Zen, Buddhist rituals, sacred music, as well as manuscript and print culture in premodern Japan. She has written numerous articles on kōshiki 講式 (Buddhist ceremonials) and co-edited a special issue of the Japanese Journal of Religious Studies on kōshiki. Her first book, Memory, Music, Manuscripts: The Ritual Dynamics of Kōshiki in Japanese Sōtō Zen, is forthcoming with the Kuroda Series of University of Hawai’i Press. She is currently working on a monograph on eisanka 詠讃歌 (Buddhist hymns) and lay Buddhist choirs in contemporary Zen Buddhism. This project will showcase how music played a vital role in the modernization of Japanese Sōtō Zen Buddhism in the last seventy years.