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Title page for ETD etd-12032008-163240


Type of Document Dissertation
Author Sheehan, Jeffrey W.
URN etd-12032008-163240
Title Ordinary People: An Ethnographic Portrait of a Black Baptist Congregation's Faithful Performance of Religion
Degree PhD
Department Religion
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Gregory F. Barz Committee Chair
Brad R. Braxton Committee Member
Dennis C. Dickerson Committee Member
Thomas Gregor Committee Member
Keywords
  • music
  • Black Baptist Church
  • Du Bois
  • African American Religion
  • Ethnomusicology
  • Nashville
  • life stories
  • frenzy
  • preacher
  • shouting
  • Souls of Black Folk
Date of Defense 2007-10-23
Availability unrestricted
Abstract
This dissertation reconsiders the importance of the preacher, the music, and the frenzy (a construction introduced by W.E.B. Du Bois in his 1903 classic, The Souls of Black Folk) as core concepts for understanding African American religious practices in the 21st century as observed in a predominantly African American Missionary Baptist Church in Nashville, Tennessee. It builds on Henry Mitchell’s observations about the importance of the Black Church congregation relative to the act of preaching and investigates the parallel significance of the congregation as a crucial partner not only for the preacher, but also for the music and the frenzy. The dissertation presents sermons, public prayers, songs, and personal interviews to convey the beliefs and attitudes of the people of Corinthian Baptist Church to a wider academic audience. Drawing on over two years of continuous ethnographic field research and field recordings, this dissertation brings the voices of preachers, musicians, and life-long church members into dialogue with the academic voices of Du Bois and Mitchell. The body chapters each consider relationships between the preacher, the music, and the frenzy by considering religious life as something that is neither more nor less comprehensible than other approaches to being human. By treating the perspectives of ordinary people with respect and operating from the assumption that their words and actions are fundamentally consistent with their beliefs, this dissertation invites readers to consider ways in which religious beliefs and practices function in a community that continues to deal with economic need and other legacies of race-based inequality.
Files
  Filename       Size       Approximate Download Time (Hours:Minutes:Seconds) 
 
 28.8 Modem   56K Modem   ISDN (64 Kb)   ISDN (128 Kb)   Higher-speed Access 
  CD1(1)Every_Year_has_a_Number_(Somebodys_Gone).wav 48.81 Mb 03:45:57 01:56:12 01:41:40 00:50:50 00:04:20
  CD1(2)Introduction_of_Pastor_Enoch_Fuzz.wav 31.81 Mb 02:27:17 01:15:44 01:06:16 00:33:08 00:02:49
  CD1(3)Where_Is_Your_Faith_1_of_2.wav 52.44 Mb 04:02:47 02:04:52 01:49:15 00:54:37 00:04:39
  CD1(4)Where_is_Your_Faith_2_of_2.wav 290.46 Mb 22:24:44 11:31:34 10:05:07 05:02:33 00:25:49
  CD1(5)Prefatory_Comments_to_The_Questions_of_a_Fool.wav 23.01 Mb 01:46:32 00:54:47 00:47:56 00:23:58 00:02:02
  CD1(6)Call_to_Worship_and_I'm_So_Glad.wav 54.33 Mb 04:11:30 02:09:21 01:53:10 00:56:35 00:04:49
  CD1(7)So_Glad_Im_Here.wav 73.67 Mb 05:41:03 02:55:24 02:33:28 01:16:44 00:06:32
  CD1(8)Prayer_Time_and_Thank_You_Lord.wav 104.49 Mb 08:03:44 04:08:46 03:37:41 01:48:50 00:09:17
  CD1(9)The_Lord_Will_Make_A_Way_Somehow.wav 77.78 Mb 06:00:05 03:05:11 02:42:02 01:21:01 00:06:54
  CD2(1)Pray_for_Me_and_Altar_Prayer.wav 96.18 Mb 07:25:17 03:49:00 03:20:23 01:40:11 00:08:32
  CD2(2)Gratefulness.wav 95.31 Mb 07:21:14 03:46:55 03:18:33 01:39:16 00:08:28
  CD2(3)Thank_You_Sir.wav 80.85 Mb 06:14:17 03:12:29 02:48:26 01:24:13 00:07:11
  CD2(4)Im_Looking_for_a_Miracle_[abridged].wav 42.75 Mb 03:17:53 01:41:46 01:29:03 00:44:31 00:03:47
  CD2(5)Comments_following_Im_Looking_for_a_Miracle.wav 20.03 Mb 01:32:42 00:47:40 00:41:43 00:20:51 00:01:46
  CD2(6)Over_My_Head.wav 42.18 Mb 03:15:15 01:40:25 01:27:52 00:43:56 00:03:44
  CD2(7)Shine_on_Me_and_Prayer.wav 78.30 Mb 06:02:31 03:06:26 02:43:08 01:21:34 00:06:57
  CD2(8)Why_You_Look_So_Sad.wav 66.36 Mb 05:07:12 02:37:59 02:18:14 01:09:07 00:05:53
  CD2(9)Ordinary_People.wav 337.23 Mb 26:01:15 13:22:56 11:42:34 05:51:17 00:29:58
  Ordinary_People.pdf 23.32 Mb 01:47:58 00:55:31 00:48:35 00:24:17 00:02:04

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