David Stowe

(517) 355-7575

705 Wells Hall
619 Red Cedar Rd
East Lansing, MI 48824

FacultyReligious Studies

Religion in North America; Religion and Sound; Religion and Film; Religion in Popular Culture


David W. Stowe teaches religious studies at Michigan State University, where he served from 2014-16 as chair of the English Department. His most recent book is Song of Exile: The Enduring Mystery of Psalm 137 (Oxford, 2016). His previous book was No Sympathy for the Devil: Christian Pop Music and the Transformation of American Evangelicalism (UNC Press 2011). How Sweet the Sound: Music in the Spiritual Lives of Americans (Harvard, 2004), won the Deems Taylor Award from ASCAP. Stowe’s first book, Swing Changes: Big Band Jazz in New Deal America (Harvard, 1994), was published in Japanese by Hosei University Press. He published his first novel, Learning from Loons, in 2020. While on leave from Michigan State University, Stowe taught at Doshisha University’s Graduate School of American Studies in Kyoto, Japan, where he also served as Associate Dean. During the 2012-13 academic year, Stowe held a research fellowship at Yale’s Institute of Sacred Music. 


Ph.D., Yale University, 1993

B.A., Haverford College, 1983

Principle Scholarly Interests

U.S. cultural history, music and religion, jazz history


ENG 210 Foundations of Literary Study

ENG 342 The Popular in Literature and Music

AMS 210 Introduction to American Studies

REL 205 Myth, Self, and Religion

REL 215 The Sound of World Religions

REL 175 Religion in Film

IAH 201 United States and the World

IAH 211 Sacred Music of the Asia-Pacific

MUS 410 Jazz History

AMS 881 American Studies Theory, Methods, and Bibliography

AMS 891 Music, Culture, and Power

University News

CAL in the Classroom
Published November 16, 2020 in College of Arts & Letters
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PRrykQ2_0HM Alumni and retired faculty and staff had the opportunity to attend a virtual event on November 7 where attendees got an insider’s look at the…Read now »
CAL Alumni Association Presents Faculty Awards
Published April 22, 2016 in College of Arts & Letters
group picture of faculty with awards
Joined by the College of Arts & Letters Alumni Association Board (photo bottom right), and CAL staff members, Acting Dean Elizabeth H. Simmons presented the 2015 CAL Alumni Association Faculty…Read now »