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Assistant Professor
Pauli Murray Hall 501
Office Hours: W 1:00-2:30pm, F 9:15-10:45 am and by appointment
Curriculum Vitae


BA Duke University, 2005
PhD Stanford University, 2012

Research Interests

Lauren Jarvis’s research focuses on the history of religion in sub-Saharan Africa, with an emphasis on twentieth-century South Africa. She is currently completing a book on the Nazaretha Church, one of the oldest and largest of the many faith healing churches that took root in southern Africa in the twentieth century. Jarvis sees religious history as a window into the ideas that matter in people’s daily lives, and her book examines the ways that involvement in new religious communities changed how people thought about the future. It is a history of collective hopes, dreams, and ambitions. Jarvis is also in the early stages of a second book-length project, which explores how Africans in southern Africa used the Bible to construct—and argue about—racial identities.

Some Notable Publications

  • “A Chief is a Chief by the Women? The Nazaretha Church, Gender, and Traditional Authority in Mtunzini, South Africa, 1900-1948” Journal of African History 56:1 (2015).
  • “Gender, Violence, and Home in the Nazareth Baptist Church, 1906-1939” in Ekhaya: The Politics of Home in KwaZulu-Natal, eds. Meghan Elisabeth Healy and Jason Hickel (University of KwaZulu-Natal Press, 2014)

Graduate Students

  • This faculty member is accepting applicants for the 2023-2024 cycle
  • Laura Cox
  • Kaela Thuney (Co-advised with Lisa A. Lindsay)

Courses Taught (as schedule allows)

For current information about course offerings, click here.

  • HIST 130 – Twentieth Century Africa
  • HIST 279 – Modern South Africa
  • HIST 534 – African Diaspora