J. Nathan Corbitt


J. Nathan Corbitt (b. 1950)

Eleven years of living in Africa, thousands of miles of travel, and uncountable hours with African people and their music led Nathan to not only love the cultures of this vast continent but also to record and transcribe a part of its vast expressive culture. Since 1979, when he first visited Malawi (later living in Kenya and Zimbabwe), the simple call and response, adapted harmonies, thunderous drums, and oral theology has influenced his world-view and writing. When Michael Hawn, long time friend and colleague, asked him to contribute CG, he was more than willing to dig through his files of remote African choruses to share the richness of music--so freely shared with him. Corbitt is indebted to African musician and Swahili teacher Manaseh Mutsoli of Kenya who so patiently taught him language, culture, and African Christian song.

Currently, J. Nathan Corbitt is Associate Dean for Research and Development and Professor of Cross-Cultural Studies at the Campolo School for Social Change at Eastern University located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In 1999 he co-founded BuildaBridge International a faith-based arts education organization committed to empowering artists, church leaders and community workers to cross cultural boundaries and bring their faith to life through the arts.

Author of The Global Awareness Profile (Intercultural Press, 1988); The Sound of the Harvest: Music's Mission in Church and Culture (Baker 1998) and co-author of Artsreach: Using the Arts to Transform Your Community (forthcoming from Baker 2003), he is currently co-conducting a national research project, funded in part by the Louisville Institute, on artists of the Christian faith involved in urban community ministry. A graduate of Mars Hill College B.M.E. (1971), Southern Baptist Theological Seminary M.C.M. (1976), and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary D.M.A, (1985) and with postgraduate studies in communications, administration, linguistics, and anthropology, Dr. Corbitt has been a faculty member at Eastern University since 1992. Between 1993 and 1999, he chaired the Communications Department in the School of Arts and Sciences at Eastern University. He speaks and consults widely in the areas of cross-cultural living and orientation, organizational culture, curriculum development, arts in community mission, and consults as a professional coach.

See his bio at www.buildabridge.org/Personnel/jnc.htm

See his research on community arts at www.urbanprophets.org