School of Humanities and Sciences
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Lerone A. Martin
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.
Martin is an award-winning author. His most recent book, "The Gospel of J. Edgar Hoover: How the FBI Aided and Abetted the Rise of White Christian Nationalism," was published in February 2023 by Princeton University Press. The book has garnered praise from numerous publications including The Nation, Foreign Affairs, The Guardian, Publisher’s Weekly, and History Today.
In 2014 he published, "Preaching on Wax: The Phonograph and the Making of Modern African American Religion."vvThe 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 NBC Today Show, The History Channel, PBS, CSPAN, and Newsy, as well as in The New York Times, Boston Globe, CNN.com, and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He currently serves as an advisor on the upcoming PBS documentary series The History of Gospel Music & Preaching.
Lerone is currently working on a nonfiction book and an adapted graphic novel about the adolescence and calling of Martin Luther King, Jr., both to be published by HarperCollins.
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.