Sherrie Tucker

International & Interdisciplinary Studies - American Studies
Primary office:
213G Bailey Hall
1440 Jayhawk Blvd


Sherrie Tucker (Professor, American Studies, University of Kansas) is the author of Dance Floor Democracy: the Social Geography of Memory at the Hollywood Canteen (Duke, 2014), Swing Shift: “All-Girl” Bands of the 1940s (Duke, 2000) and co-editor, with Nichole T. Rustin, of Big Ears: Listening for Gender in Jazz Studies (Duke, 2008). She is a member of two major collaborative research initiatives: International Institute of Critical Improvisation Studies and Improvisation, Community, and Social Practice (for which she served as facilitator for the Improvisation, Gender, and the Body research area) both funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. She is a founding member of the Melba Liston Research Collective, a member of the AUMI (Adaptive Use Musical Instrument) research team of the Deep Listening Institute, and founding member of AUMI-KU InterArts, one of six member institutions of the AUMI Research Consortium. She was the Louis Armstrong Visiting Professor at the Center for Jazz Studies at Columbia University in 2004-2005, where she was a member of the Columbia Jazz Study Group. With Randal M. Jelks, she co-edits the journal American Studies. She serves with Deborah Wong and Jeremy Wallach as Series Editors for the Music/Culture Series at Wesleyan University Press.


Ph.D., History of Consciousness, University of California, Santa Cruz

M.A., Women's Studies, San Francisco State University

M.A., Creative Writing, San Francisco State University

B.A., Creative Writing, San Francisco State University

Teaching Interests

  • Jazz studies
  • Improvisation studies
  • Gender
  • Feminist theory
  • Theories of race and ethnicity
  • Queer theory
  • Cultural Studies
  • Oral history
  • Popular culture
  • Theories of sexuality
  • Disability studies

Selected Publications

Dvorak, Abbey, and Sherrie Tucker. "The Adaptive Use Musical Instrument (AUMI): A Useful App for Inclusive Practice." Imagine: Music Therapy 8.1 (Fall 2017): 48-50.

Haaheim, Kip, Jesse Stewart, Sherrie Tucker, and Pete Williams. "AUMI-Futurism: the Elsewhere and "Elsewhen" of (Un)Rolling the Boulder and Turning the Page [Music and Arts in Action]." Music and Arts in Action 6.1 (2017): 21 p.

Tucker, Sherrie. poem for for too many brilliant scholars, not enough of whom are with us today. Women and Music: A Journal of Gender and Culture Vol. 21. 2017: 1-2.

Tucker, Sherrie. "A Conundrum is a Woman-in-Jazz: Enduring Improvisations on the Categorical Exclusions of Being Included." Gender and identity in Jazz . Ed. Wolfram Knauer. Germany: Wolke Verlag Hofheim, 2016. 241-262. Darmstädter Beiträge zur Jazzforschung 14.

Tucker, Sherrie. "Jazz History Remix: Black Women from 'Enter' to 'Center'." Issues in African American Music. Ed. Portia Maultsby, Ed. Mellonee Burnim. New York: Routledge, 9 November 2016. 256-269.

Tucker, Sherrie. "‘Don’t Explain’: A Billie Holiday Book That Compels Us to Listen Instead." Rev. of Billie Holiday: The Musician and the Myth . Common Reader (26 July 2016): 8 p.

Tucker, Sherrie, Jaclyn Heyen, Christine Sun Kim, Leaf Miller, Pauline Oliveros, Neil Rolnick, Clara Tomaz, and David Whalen. "Stretched Boundaries: Improvising Across Abilities." Negotiated Moments: Improvisation, Sound, and Subjectivity. Ed. Ellen Waterman, Ed. Gillian Siddall. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 4 March 2016. 181-198.

Tucker, Sherrie. "Where is the Jazz in Jazzercise?" Women and Music: A Journal of Gender and Culture 19.2015 (2015): 18-26.

Tucker, Sherrie. Dance Floor Democracy: The Social Geography of Memory at the Hollywood Canteen. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, October 2014.

Hairston-O'Connell, Monica, and Sherrie Tucker. "Not One to Toot Her Own Horn(?): Melba Liston’s Oral Histories and Classroom Presentations." Black Music Research Journal (Chicago: University of Illinois Press) 34.1 (Spring 2014): 121-158.

Tucker, Sherrie. "It Don't Mean a Thing if it Ain't in the History Books (reprint, excerpt of Swing Shift: 'All-Girl' Bands of the 1940s)." Keeping Time: Readings in Jazz History, 2nd Edition. New York: Oxford University Press, March 2014. 111-118.

Tucker, Sherrie. "Swing: from Time to Torque (Dance Floor Democracy at the Hollywood Canteen)." Ed. Gerald Early. Daedalus: Journal of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences 142.4 (Fall 2013): 82-97.

Tucker, Sherrie. "Beyond the Brass Ceiling: Dolly Jones Trumpets Modernity in Oscar Micheaux's Swing!" Jazz Perspectives 3.1 (2009): 3-34.

Rustin, Nichole T, Tucker, Sherrie (Ed.). Big Ears: Listening for Gender in Jazz Studies. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2008.

Tucker, Sherrie. "When Did Jazz Go Straight?: A Queer Question For Jazz Studies." Critical Studies in Improvisation/Etudes critiques en improvisation 4.2 (2008).

Tucker, Sherrie. "Telling Performances: Jazz History Remembered and Remade by the Women in the Band." Unequal Sisters: A Multicultural Reader in U.S. Women's History. 4th ed. New York: Routledge, 2007. 466-477.

Tucker, Sherrie. "Deconstructing the Jazz Tradition: The Subjectless Subject of New Jazz Studies." The Source: Challenging Jazz Criticism 2 (2005): 31-46.

Tucker, Sherrie. "Bordering on Community: Improvising Women Improvising Women-in-Jazz." The Other Side of Nowhere: Jazz, Improvisation, and Communities in Dialogue. Ed. Ajay Heble, Ed. Daniel Fischlin. Middletown, CT: Wesleyan, 2004. 244-267.

Tucker, Sherrie. A Feminist Perspective on New Orleans Jazz Women. 2004.

Tucker, Sherrie. "When Subjects Don't Come Out." Queer Episodes in Music and Modern Identity. Ed. Sophie Fuller, Ed. Lloyd Whitesell. Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 2002. 293-310.

Tucker, Sherrie. Swing Shift: "All-Girl" Bands of the 1940s. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2000.

Selected Presentations

Selected Grants

  • Congratulations to Sam Steuart for being named KU's 20th Truman scholar!
  • This article, written by Geoffrey Newman, was published in the August edition of the Kansas History Journal. Congratulations Geoffrey!
  • Rachel Schwaller and Saoussen Cheddadi successfully defended their respective dissertations on October 29, 2018. Congratulations, Drs. Schwaller and Cheddadi!
  • Congratulations to Ph.D. candidate Kathryn Vaggalis for being awarded the American Studies Association's 2018 Gene Wise-Warren Susman Prize!
  • Dr. Gamze Kati Gumus defended her dissertation with honors on May 10, 2018. Congratulations, Dr. Kati Gumus!
  • KU-AUMI InterArts was recently featured by the Commons in a video on improving inclusive communities at KU. You can watch the video, which features our own Sherrie Tucker amongst other founders of the movement at KU, and learn more about AUMI here!
  • Congratulations to Professor Robert Warrior on being elected to a member of the prestigious American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
  • This articlewritten by Ph.D. candidate Hannah Bailey, was published in the latest edition of Soundings: An Interdisciplinary Journal. Congratulations, Hannah!
  • We would like to recognize Patrick Sumner, 2005 alumni, for his work in this article about the defacement of the John Brown memorial in the Quindaro area of Kansas City, Kansas.
  • Congratulations to Dr. Jonathan Burrow-Branine for successfully defending his dissertation with honors January 25, 2018.
  • Please read this article about Professor Robert Warrior titled: Native scholar uncomfortably at home in American studies field.
  • Congratulations to Daniel Carey-Whalen, an alumni that was recently promoted as UTEP's Centennial Museum director.
  • Congratulations to Josh Parshall, an alumni who was recently featured in this article.
  • How a motion-tracking musical software is breaking down barriers for people with disabilities: click here to read more about the Adaptive Use Musical Instrument (AUMI), a one-of-a-kind piece of inclusive technology that promotes musical improvisation. The article recognizes Professor Sherrie Tucker, who started AUMI jam sessions and helped to bring the grant and symposium for it to Lawrence. Written by Omar Sanchez
  • KU Special Education Department: With Ray Pence
  • Tribute Or Tribulation? How do we commemorate history? What is the best way to remember a conflicted and painful past? And who gets to decide? Listen here »
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