Rycenga, Jennifer J

Rycenga, Jennifer J

Professor, Humanities Department
Coordinator, Comparative Religious Studies Program


Preferred: jennifer.rycenga@sjsu.edu

Alternate: jrycenga@earthlink.net


Preferred: (408) 924-1367

Alternate: (650) 440-0063 (cell)

Retired as of June 2023!


  • Doctor of Philosophy, Graduate Theological Union, 1992
  • Master of Arts, Religious Studies, Sacred Heart Univ, Connecticut, United States, 1984
  • Master of Music, Music Composition, University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, 1981
  • Bachelor of Arts, Music, Yale Univ, Connecticut, United States, 1980


Jennifer Rycenga is Professor Emerita of Comparative Religious Studies at San José State University. Her areas of interest include American religious history, religion and music, feminist analyses of religion, lesbian history, religion and politics, and feminist analyses of music. Her co-edited volume of the writings of feminist Mary Daly, The Mary Daly Reader, with Linda Barufaldi, was published in December 2016 by New York University Press. She has published numerous articles, and co-edited the volumes Frontline Feminisms with Marguerite Waller (Routledge, 2000), and Queering the Popular Pitch with Sheila Whiteley (Routledge, 2006). Her cultural biography of white Abolitionist educator Prudence Crandall (1803-1890) and her Black students, Schooling the Nation, is set for publication in 2024. A related project, The Unionist Unified, reconstructs the Unionist newspaper that was published in support of Crandall's efforts. This Digital Humanities project was a collaboration with Library faculty Nick Szydlowski. Link provided below. 

She received the Ph.D. in the area of Religion and Music from the Graduate Theological Union and the University of California at Berkeley in 1992. She taught at SJSU from 1995 to 2023.

Prof. Rycenga is an avid birder, with a North American Life List of over 700 species, and over 2150 species worldwide. Ask her about your backyard visitors and encounters with birds that go bump in the night! She served as president of the Sequoia Audubon Society in San Mateo county, and remains an avid advocate for Citizen-Science projects.


SJSU ScholarWorks page - https://works.bepress.com/jennifer-rycenga/ 

Amazon Author Page - https://www.amazon.com/Jennifer-Rycenga/e/B06XJRSDV7

The Unionist Unified - https://sjsu-library.github.io/unionist/ 

Personal Webpage - https://www.cerebratenature.net/

San Mateo County Birding Guide - https://birding.sequoia-audubon.org/ 

iNaturalist profile - https://www.inaturalist.org/people/gyrrlfalcon 

eBird profile - https://ebird.org/profile/OTEyMjk/world