Date of Award

2019

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (Christian Studies) - MA (CSt)

Department

Theology

First Advisor/Committee Member

Brian Bantum, Ph.D., Professor of Theology

Second Advisor/Committee Member

Richard B. Steele, Ph.D., Professor of Moral and Historical Theology

Keywords

Crouch, Andraé (Edward), 1942-2015. Just Andraé—Theology; African American composers; African Americans—Music; Church music—Philosophy and aesthetics; Evangelistic work; Gospel music—United States; Gospel musicians; Gospel singers; Social justice—Religious aspects

Abstract

Each generation of musical artists challenges its audience according to the needs and the tenor of the times. Composer and musical prodigy Andraé Edward Crouch is known as the father of Modern/Contemporary African American Gospel music. Crouch infused traditional gospel, black hymnody, elements of art song, concert music, jazz and R & B forms into his canon. This thesis explores Crouch’s work through the intersection of ideas on theology, imagination, race, poverty systems, liberty and social justice, as well as his convictions for reaching “the lost”, and challenging the church to evolve spiritually towards a greater advancement of God’s Kingdom. His convictions undergirding his work were inextricably linked to his observations of American life in the middle to late twentieth century. While his musical styling enlarged artistic boundaries of gospel music’s traditional genre and typical expressions, his artistic merit and network spanned the depth of modern secular music culture, inspiring generations of musicians, producers and composers.

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