B.S. in Performance Studies from Northwestern University (1987) M.A. (1993), M.Phil. (1994) Ph.D. (1997) in anthropology from NYU
Areas of Research/Interest
contemporary African American culture, the production of identity, the construction and performance of race and gender in music, and the relationship between race, class, generation, and culture
National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, 2013-2014 American Fellow, American Association of University Women, 2000-2001
Beyond Brown Sugar: Voices of African American Women in Rock and Roll, 1953-1984. Book manuscript in progress. Under contract at Duke University Press.
Right to Rock: The Black Rock Coalition and the Cultural Politics of Race (Duke University Press, 2004)
Articles and Chapters
"Music, Power, and Practice," Ethnomusicology 58 (2):322-328 (Spring/Summer 2014) "Music, Sexuality, and Power: A Practice Theory Approach," Colloquy on Music and Sexuality, Journal of the American Musicological Society, 66(3):844-848 (Fall 2013) "Listening for Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton's Voice: The Sound of Race and Gender Transgressions in Rock and Roll," Women and Music. A Journal of Gender and Culture 15:1-17, (2011) "They Say She's Different: Race, Gender, and Genre and the Liberated Black Femininity of Betty Davis," Journal of Popular Music Studies, 23(2): 146-165, June 2011. "The 'Daughters of Soul' Tour and the Politics and Possibilities of Black Music," Ethnographies of Neoliberalism, Carol J. Greenhouse, ed., pp. 207-220. University of Pennsylvania Press, 2010. "African Americans and Rock' n Roll," in African Americans and Popular Culture: Volume III, Music and Popular Art, Todd, ed., pp.31-60. Praeger Publishers, 2008. "Women in African American Music: Rock," In African American Music: An Introduction, Mellonee Burnim and Portia Maultsby, eds., pp. 558-577. Routledge Press, 2006.
Maureen Mahon is an associate professor in the Department of Music at New York University. A cultural anthropologist, her research interests include African American music and culture; the construction and performance of race and gender in music; and the relationship between race, class, generation, and culture. She teaches courses on the history of rock and roll, music and the construction of race, fieldwork methods, and African American women and music. She is the author of Right to Rock: The Black Rock Coalition and the Cultural Politics of Race (Duke University, 2004), an inquiry into the ways African American rock musicians in the 1990s used music and activism to challenge prevailing ideas about black music and identity. Her articles on African-American cultural studies have appeared in academic venues such as American Ethnologist, Journal of Popular Music Studies; Women and Music: A Journal of Gender and Culture; and Souls: A Critical Journal of Black Politics, Culture, and Society and online at EbonyJet.com and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum website. She has held fellowships from the National Science Foundation, the Ford Foundation, and the American Association of University Women. She has received a 2013-14 National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship for her work on her research on the contribution of African American women such as Big Mama Thornton, the Shirelles, Tina Turner, Darlene Love, Betty Davis, and Labelle to rock. Her book on the subject, Beyond Brown Sugar: Voices of African American Women in Rock and Roll, 1953-1984, is under contract with Duke University Press.
Photo by Joy Bell