BREAKING: Wayne is Back

Wayne Marshall. The man is a legend.

Wayne Marshall

He taught at Brandeis for two years (2007-2008, 2008-2009), doing courses like “Digital Pop from Hip-Hop to Mashup,” “Reggae Representation, Race and Nation,” or “Global Hip-Hop.”

Then, with the hiring freeze, the University refused to rehire him. (He was on a 2-year contract) This was a big deal.

Several students and alumni instantly created the “Save Wayne Campaign,” led by Innermost Parts alum Nathan Robinson.

Take this look at what we were saying at the time:
On Innermost Parts:

So one of Brandeis’s coolest professors is about to become an early victim of the budget cuts.

I took a class with Professor Wayne Marshall last semester (Race, Representation, Reggae and Nation), and loved every minute of it. Professor Marshall is one of the absolute best instructors I’ve had, and it sadly looks like he’s going to get the axe.

What Alumni Said:

I know that if I were still a student at Brandeis and he were not to return simply because something had to be cut from the budget, I would be confused as to why I was still at the school.

Even Professors Chimed In:

Professor Marshall’s contributions to the music faculty are important, to the students and to the faculty. His critical analysis on such subjects as globalization, his probing in topics such as ‘world’ music, his savvy in the most cutting edge music technologies and conversations – are all much needed as we connect temporally, spatially, politically, socially, culturally, to all of contemporary life. As his colleague in the music dept., I can say he has opened up necessary paths to my own thinking, and demonstrates just how essential music is to society, for better or for worse! He is the kind of educator that brings Brandeis into the 21t century at a gallop.

Judith Eissenberg, Prof of the Practice, Music

But that’s not all.

In the Hoot:

Prof. Wayne Marshall (AAAS and MUS) is a man of seemingly infinite identities: blogger, DJ, rapper, professor, author, researcher, and musician. Every Monday night, you can catch him spinning tunes at the Enormous Room club in Central Square, and every Tuesday afternoon he’ll be teaching about Music and Globalization.

Marshall seems to be consistently defying the image of the professor as a fusty academic. He is as plugged-in to the digital culture as any web-savvy teen. On his blog, he often speaks in slang culled from the streets of Kingston or the latest hip-hop anthem, mixing scholarly discourse with samples and snippets from the cultures he studies.

No matter where Wayne Marshall teaches, his students can expect an unforgettable academic experience. A Marshall class may not be typical, but as his Brandeis students (myself included) can attest, it’s absolutely worth the time.

Wayne went on to get a prestigious fellowship at the MIT media lab. For two years we privately mocked the incompetence at Brandeis that let him slip away. (Sorry Jehuda, but it’s true!)

Now, two years later, I’m pleased to report that motherfucking wayne is coming back to motherfucking Brandeis. He’ll be teaching a course called “Reggae, Race and Nation” on Tuesday evenings. It’s up on the registrar’s site and everything.

Sign up! Sign up now!

Oh I am so excited.

Save Wayne Campaign in the Boston Phoenix

The Boston Phoenix has a short piece on the Save Wayne campaign. Perhaps administrators will start to listen now!

Check it out:

“Brandeis President Jehuda Reinharz unleashed a torrent of negative publicity for his university when, with zero transparency, he announced that the school would shut down its vaunted campus-based Rose Art Museum… Condemnation from all corners of the art world was swift. Now, ethnomusicologically invigorated Brandeis students and alumni are hoping for a similar outburst of criticism for the probable downsizing of Wayne Marshall, who, since 2007, has taught urban music and African-American studies as the school’s Florence Levy Kay fellow.”

I’d like to quickly mention one important point about Wayne Marshall’s leaving which I do not believe has been stressed enough: how much of a loss his departure will be to the African and Afro-American Studies department. With Professor Mapps away in the fall, and Professors Smith, Joseph, and Sundiata away currently, an already small department will have to continue offering limited class selections. Although the faculty and classes we do have are excellent, AAAS majors like myself have few choices in which classes to take to satisfy our major requirements. Wayne Marshall’s loss is therefore extremely frustrating, because he added a greater diversity of subjects for AAAS students to pursue.

So, yes, Marshall’s departure is terrible in so many ways. Remember to sign the petition at, and to join the Facebook group!

The Save Wayne campaign has an awesome website

Check this out:

Leor just sent me the link to the AMAZING website for the Save Wayne campaign. We’re really going to step up the efforts to save Wayne Marshall, the best reggae professor at Brandeis.

Remember, if Wayne Marshall departs, we lose 20% of our already-small African-American Studies faculty.

Sign the petition now! And send it to your friends! Student support is the only way we’ll save Prof. Marshall. Remember, alumni, faculty, staff, and parents are welcome to sign the petition as well! Let’s get as many people as possible!

Today is your last day to nominate Wayne Marshall for a teaching award!

Per the campus-wide Student Union email:

“Today is your last chance to nominate a member of the Brandeis faculty for a Teaching Award! If you have a professor who you think deserves recognition for outstanding teaching, please send an e-mail with a paragraph describing why a professor deserves an award to

Nominations are due by the end of the day, Monday, March 2, 2009.”

Of course, you can nominate whoever you like, but may I suggest a particular Music and AAAS professor whose job might hang in the balance? I speak of course, of Wayne Marshall, who absolutely deserves a teaching award. A flood of nominations for him could also serve as an important reminder to Brandeis that he matters to our school. Please, take five minutes of your time and send an email to

Also, don’t forget to email to sign the Save Wayne petition.