Part of the Black American Popular Religion Conference
Marla Frederick is Professor of African and African American Studies and the Study of Religion at Harvard University, and Chair of the Committee on the Study of Religion. She is the author of Between Sundays: Black Women and Everyday Struggles of Faith, an ethnography of the complex lives and faith commitments of women in rural North Carolina. Her co-authored book, Local Democracy Under Siege: Activism, Public Interests and Private Politics, won the 2008 Best Book Award from the Society for the Anthropology of North America. Frederick’s research addresses the intersections of religion, race, gender, media, politics and economics. She is currently completing an ethnography entitled, “Colored Television: Religion, Media and Racial Uplift in the Black Atlantic World”, teasing out a triangulated approach to understanding how African American producers, distributors and consumers of religious broadcasting approach and make meaning of mediated religion. It addresses concerns related to the rise of prosperity ministries in poor communities as well as the dramatic rise of African American religious broadcasters on television. She is also co-authoring a manuscript with anthropologists John Jackson and Carolyn Rouse, entitled “Televised Redemption,” on how Black Muslims, Christians and Hebrew Israelites use media in the strategic deployment of their racial, economic and religious views of social uplift.