Black Sacred Music Archive



Duke University Press is pleased to make the complete archive of Black Sacred Music: A Journal of Theomusicology available digitally for the first time. Edited by Yahya Jongintaba (formerly known as Jon Michael Spencer), the journal was published semiannually from 1987 to 1995 (9 volumes).

Black Sacred Music sought to establish theomusicology—a theologically informed musicology—as a distinct discipline, incorporating methods from anthropology, sociology, psychology, and philosophy to examine the full range of black sacred music. Topics included black secular music, the early days of rap, soul, jazz, civil rights songs, the religious music of Africa and the African diaspora, spirituals, gospel music, and the music of the black church.

The journal consisted of scholarly articles, essays, hymns and folk songs, sermons, historical reprints, and reviews of books, hymn books, and recordings. It also published volumes of archival writings by R. Nathaniel Dett, William Grant Still, and Willis Laurence James.

Notable contributors: Philip V. Bohlman, Michael Eric Dyson, Andrew Greeley, Mark Sumner Harvey, Willie James Jennings, D. Soyini Madison, Sonja Peterson-Lewis, Harold Dean Trulear, William C. Turner Jr., Archbishop Desmond M. Tutu, Cornel West, Jeremiah A. Wright. Jr.

Please contact to learn more or place an order.

Product Features

  • DRM free
  • Perpetual access to purchased content
  • COUNTER-compliant usage statistics
  • No ongoing maintenance fees
  • Unlimited multiuser access


  • Complete digital archive (1987–1995): $500

Special Issues

  • The Theology of American Popular Music (vol. 3, no. 2, 1989)
  • Unsung Hymns by Black and Unknown Bards (vol. 4, no. 1, 1990)
  • The Emergency of Black and the Emergence of Rap (vol. 5, no. 1, 1991)
  • The R. Nathaniel Dett Reader: Essays on Black Sacred Music (vol. 5, no. 2, 1991)
  • Sacred Music of the Secular City: From Blues to Rap (vol. 6, no. 1, 1992)
  • The William Grant Still Reader: Essays on American Music (vol. 6, no. 2, 1992)
  • The Worshipping Church in Africa (vol. 7, no. 2, 1993)
  • Theomusicology (vol. 8, no. 1, 1994)
  • Stars in De Elements: A Study of Negro Folk Music by Willis Laurence James (vol. 9, no. 1–2, 1995)

Electronic Access

Before orders can be processed, Duke University Press must receive prepayment. Prepayment must be sent to:

Duke University Press
Customer Relations
905 W. Main St., Suite 18B
Durham, NC 27701
+1.919.688.5134 (ph), +1-919-688-2615 (fax)


Duke University Press requires a signed site license agreement for access to the Black Sacred Music archive. 

Any questions regarding the site license can be directed to the Library Relations and Sales Manager at +1.919.687.3655 or

Journals Site License (PDF)

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