Ronald E. Brown (aa4723)

University information

Title: Professor
Unit: Political Science
Department: College of Liberal Arts & Science

Contact information

2013 Faculty/Administration Bl
Political Science
Liberal Arts
Detroit, 48202

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences


Political Science

Title: Professor
Phone: 313-577-2630
Fax: 313-993-3435

656 West Kirby St.
2013 Faculty/Administration Building

Curriculum Vitae: 127328 1692316305 file
Research interest(s)/area of expertise:

Religion and politics

Urban politics

Detroit politics

Political dissent

Race and politics


Race and Political Identification in the United States and the Republic of South Africa in the 21st Century 

An ongoing research interest evolve around the covenant civil religious tradition, activism, and challenges of progressive clergy and activists.  A persistent finding, in both survey research as well, sermons, and clerical interviews is that the willingness to strive toward racial justice among civil rights activists inspires white progressive clergy to  engage in social justice activism.
A new collaborative research project with R. Khari Brown, Department of Sociology, explores the relative influence of fiscal resources on the potential of environmental  and criminal justice congregational activism.
 Finally, I am building the foundation to explore  the influence  that race as well as racialized identities have on the perceptions of procedural and substantive democracy among university students at Wayne State University and the University of Pretoria, South Africa. The project is in collaboration with colleagues in the Department of Political Science, the Univeristy of Pretoria.
Education – Degrees, Licenses, Certifications: Ph.D.
Awards and grants:

National Science Foundation, “The National Politics Study,” Co-Principal Investigator, with James Jackson, University of Michigan, (Principal Investigator), Cara J. Wong, University of Illinois, (Co-Principal Investigator), Vincent Hutchings, University of Michigan, (Co-Principal Investigator), July 1, 2004 to June 30, 2007, $375,000


The Wayne State University Board of Governors, Annual Faculty Recognition of Honor in Outstanding Contributions to Scholarship and Learning, April 28, 2023 ( Ronald Brown and R. Khari Brown)









Selected publications:
  • Ronald E. Brown, Davin Phoenix, and James S. Jackson, “Turning the Wheels: Striving and Black American Social Identity in the 21st Century”, National Political Science Review, A Publication of the National Conference of Black Political Scientists, Volume 20.2, pp.129-148. 2019.
  • R. Khari Brown, Edward Eschler, Ronald E. Brown, "Political Congregations, Race, & Environmental Policy Attitudes," Manuscript ID JSSR-OA-08-2019-179, Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, (Accepted for publication, August 2020).
  • R. Khari Brown, Ronald E. Brown, Angela Kaiser, Race, Religious Tradition, and Environmental Conservation, Race, Religious Tradition, and Environmental Conservation, Sociology of Religion, sraa028,, September 22, 2020.
  • R. Khari Brown, Ronald Brown, and James S. Jackson, Race, Religion and Politics in America, University of Michigan Press
  • R. Khari Brown, Ronald E. Brown, and James S. Jackson, Race and the Power of Sermons on American Politics, Ann Arbor, University Press, 2021
  • R. Khari Brown and Ronald E. Brown, “What Americans hear about Social Justice at church-and what they do about it.” November 18, 2021. they-do-about-it-168713.
  • R. Khari Brown, Berkley Franz, and Ronald E. Brown, “Religious and Racial/Ethnic Differences in Flu and COVID-19 Vaccination Intentions”. Conditional Acceptance, Decision on Manuscript ID USFO-2022- 0013.R1Sociological Focus, September 2022.
  • Ronald E. Brown and R. Khari Brown, Book Talk: Race and the Power of Sermons on American Politics, by R. Khari Brown, Ronald E. Brown, and James S. Jackson, (2021, University of Michigan Press) Response to Calvin E. Smidt. The Interdisciplinary Journal of Research on Religion, Volume 18, Article 9, ISSN 1556-3723, August 2022


Citation index:

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Ronald E. Brown

Office of International Programs

Title: Associate Professor
Position Title:

Associate Professor, Political Science


 Dr. Ronald E. Brown is an associate professor of political science whose teaching and research interests intersect. He strongly believes that teaching Introduction to American Politics contributes to the health of our democratic republic. In addition, Religion and Politics, Detroit Politics, and African American Politics expose students to the ongoing quest for procedural and substantive justice by civil rights activists and scholars.

Brown is a board member and participant in civic literacy programs sponsored by Citizen Detroit, a nonprofit organization that hosts workshops on topics such as gerrymandering, the City Charter, local, state, and national elections.

An international or global democratic perspective is an integral part of courses taught by Professor Brown. Illustrative examples include writings and analyses of Frederick Douglass’s anti-slavery speeches in Great Britain in the 19th century, as well as comparison and contrast between black power struggles in the United States, Great Britain, and South Africa. Moreover, Professor Brown’s prior study abroad courses identifying and describing faith-based politics in South Africa, Turkey, and Ghana increased student knowledge of the power of government(s) to control the political agenda.

In the Fall 2021 semester, the African American Politics course will have an international dimension that explores the political narratives that human rights activists, intellectuals, and faith-based organizations and institutions employ to problematize policing, surveillance, and state-sponsored violence.

Ronald Brown’s recent research projects are with his son, Associate Professor R. Khari Brown, Department of Sociology, Wayne State University. He is the co-co-principal investigator of the 2020-21 National Politics Study, and the Detroit Area COVID-19 Study, co-funded by the University of Michigan and Wayne State University. He is the co-author along with R. Khari Brown, and James S. Jackson, Race and the Power of Sermons on American Politics, University of Michigan Press, 2021.

Ronald E. Brown

Courses taught by Ronald E. Brown

Fall Term 2024 (future)

Winter Term 2024 (current)

Fall Term 2023

Winter Term 2023

Fall Term 2022

Winter Term 2022

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