Lauren Poluha is an ethnomusicologist whose research focuses on the intersections
of music, religion and ethnicity in the Caribbean and African Diaspora. Her doctoral
dissertation examines the role of music in the negotiation of identity and ethnicity
among Afro-Indigenous Garifuna Christian churches in Belize, Central America. More
broadly, her work explores how indigenous communities in developing countries are
using religion, music, and the arts to mobilize in response to globalization. She
has presented research at international conferences for the Society for Ethnomusicology,
Association for the Study of the Worldwide African Diaspora, and Association of Caribbean
Poluha holds a Bachelor's degree in Music Theory from the University of Michigan. She earned her M.A. and Ph.D. in Ethnomusicology from UCLA, where she studied with Tara Browner, Jacqueline DjeDje, and Anthony Seeger. Primarily a classical pianist, she has also studied Javanese gamelan, Ewe drumming and dance, Hindustani tabla, and Garifuna drumming.
At Towson, Poluha teaches courses on women in western music and music in the United States.