Ph.D., Dual Major, Anthropology and African American & African Studies, Michigan State University.

M.A., Anthropology, Michigan State University.

B.A., Dual Major, Anthropology and Ethnic Studies, University of Colorado-Boulder, summa cum laude.

Courses Taught

  • Sex, Race & Power: Concepts for Everyday Life
  • Religious Environments of the Black Atlantic: The Caribbean & Latin America
  • Ritual & Culture within the African Diaspora
  • Religious Thought in the Black Atlantic: Cuba
  • Decolonizing the Anthropology of Religion
  • Healing and Religion
  • Radical Empathy
  • Visual Narration: Ritual & Art in the African Diaspora
  • Integrative Studies in Social Science: Individual and Society
  • Gender and Anthropology
  • Graduate Research Methods in Cultural Anthropology
  • Cross-cultural Qualitative Field Research Methods: Cuba; Ghana; San Andrés Island, Columbia; Port of Spain, Trinidad

Research Interests

Religion and ritual

Culture, identity, and power in the African Atlantic diaspora


African American Studies

Anthropology of religion

Epistemology and Religious Thought in the African Atlantic Diaspora


Radical Pedagogies

Qualitative field research methods


2021 Dorroll, Courtney, Perry Henson, Sonya Maria Johnson, Trina Jones. “Adding Self-Care to the First-Year Experience.” Journal of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning.Under review.

2016 Johnson, Sonya Maria. “African-inspired Rituals in the Atlantic World, Oriente, Cuba.” In Religion and Society series, volume 2, Religion Experienced Through Rituals and Pilgrimage, Anastasia Panagakos, volume editor, Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger Publishers.

Sonya Maria Johnson

Assistant Professor of Religious Studies and Critical Identity Studies,
Mouat Junior Professor of International Studies

 Pronouns: she/her/hers  Email:  Phone: 608-363-2333  Office: Room 214, Morse-Ingersoll Hall

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