Faculty

At Brown there are a number of professors who teach from a contemplative perspective or whose research includes a significant contemplative element; it is from this group that we would form the core faculty for the concentration. Some of them teach courses in which contemplative experience is studied primarily from a third-person approach; others primarily from a critical first-person approach; others blend both approaches. But all share a common vision that human contemplative experience is a valid and important subject for research and teaching. This group includes: 

Michelle Bach-Coulibaly, Senior Lecturer in Theatre Arts and Performance Studies, who works with contemplative states induced through African dance;

Willoughby Britton, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior (Research), Bio Med, a clinical psychologist who studies the effects of meditation;

Carole Deboer-Langworthy, Lecturer in English/Nonfiction Writing, who teaches contemplative autobiography;

Erik Ehn, Professor of Theater Arts and Performance Studies, who uses contemplative writing as a tool for centering focus selflessly on the present;

Christopher Hill, Professor of Philosophy, who studies mind and consciousness;

Catherine Kerr, Assistant Professor (Research) of Family Medicine in Bio Med, who studies the Cognitive Neuroscience of Meditation;

Monica Linden, Lecturer in Neuroscience, who works on mindfulness and brain plasticity;

Kym Moore, Assistant Professor of Theater and Performance Studies, who incorporates contemplative practices into actor training in order to foster greater awareness, focus and presence into performance practice;

Amy Remensnyder, Associate Professor of History, who works on medieval European monasticism;

Harold D. Roth, Professor of Religious Studies, who works on the contemplative traditions of classical China, including Daosim;

Yuka Sasaki, Associate Professor (Research) of Cognitive, Linguistic, and Psychological Sciences, who studies the influence of sleep on cognitive and visual plasticity;

Victoria Smith, Senior Lecturer in Hispanic Studies, who works on contemplative language acquisition;

Takeo Watanabe, Professor of Cognitive, Linguistic and Psychological Sciences, who studies the influence of concentration techniques on cognitive and visual plasticity.

Supporting and Advisory Faculty


Thomas Coburn
, Religious Studies Visiting Scholar, who studies South Asian Goddess traditions and contemplation within the liberal arts and who is the former President of Naropa University;

Albert Dahlberg, Professor of Medical Science, BioMed, who studies complementary medicine, consciousness and creativity;

John Bradley Marston, Professor of Physics, who studies theoretical condensed matter physics and the multidisciplinary problems of environmental dispersal of radioactive wastes and climate change.

Contemplative Studies Steering Committee has formed from this core group and will guide the concentration: Harold Roth, Amy Remensnyder, Catherine Kerr, Willoughby Britton, and Thomas Coburn.

Until the Concentration becomes established, the Contemplative Studies Initiative faculty members are willing to guide work in their own areas of expertise and support students interested in developing an independent concentration.