Dr. Charrise Barron is an ethnomusicologist and scholar of African American religious and cultural history dually appointed in the Department of Africana Studies/Rites and Reason Theatre and the Department of Music. She joined Brown’s faculty in 2018 as a Presidential Diversity Postdoctoral Fellow in Religious Studies, Africana Studies, and the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America (CSREA). While her research, writing, and presentations have explored a range of topics in African American religion, music, and culture, her current book project centers on contemporary gospel music. This work illuminates the marked shifts away from previous eras of gospel performance and culture which have defined the last twenty-five years of the genre.
Dr. Barron earned her PhD in African and African American Studies, with a secondary field of study in ethnomusicology, from Harvard University. She holds a Master of Divinity summa cum laude from Yale Divinity School, where she was also an active student in the Institute of Sacred Music (ISM). Dr. Barron is a Forum for Theological Exploration (FTE) Doctoral Fellowship alumna, and a member of the Harvard University Society of Horizons Scholars. Prior to teaching at Brown, she has held fellowships and taught at Harvard, Yale, and Colorado College.