LSU Experts Available to Speak on Mardi Gras History and Traditions

February 02, 2023

LSU faculty experts are available for media interviews about Mardi Gras history and traditions. 

BATON ROUGE – A number of LSU faculty experts are available for media interviews about topics surrounding Mardi Gras history and traditions. To schedule interviews, contact Alison Satake 510-816-8161 / or Abbi Rocha Laymoun 817-938-6102 / 

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LSU researchers available to speak on topics related to Mardi Gras include:

Mark Benfield, professor, Department of Oceanography & Coastal Sciences

Contact: 225-578-6372 /   

Areas of expertise: How Mardi Gras beads can become microplastics that end up in the Mississippi River and the Gulf of Mexico

Joyce Marie Jackson, professor of folklore-ethnomusicology, Department of Geography & Anthropology chair and the James J. Parsons Endowed Professor

Contact: 225-578-5942 /   

Areas of expertise: Mardi Gras Indians and other black masking traditions; carnivalesque street theater and resistance; transforming identities and public space; diasporic  relationships including Haiti and Trinidad.  

Naohiro Kato, associate professor, Department of Biological Sciences

Contact: 225-578-2004 /   

Areas of expertise: Developing biodegradable Mardi Gras beads and doubloons from algae

Alecia P. Long, professor, Department of History

Contact: 225-578-4458 /    

Areas of expertise: 19th and 20th century social and cultural history of the United States, especially Louisiana and New Orleans

Michael Pasquier, professor, Departments of Religious Studies and History and associate dean, College of Humanities and Social Sciences

Contact: 225-578-1389 /  

Areas of expertise: Roman Catholicism in the South, Roman Catholic traditions surrounding Mardi Gras and into Lent

Helen Regis, associate professor, Department of Geography & Anthropology

Contact: 225-578-6171 / 

Areas of expertise: Mardi Gras marching groups, innovation and tradition, alternative parades, New Orleans, gender, neighborhoods, race/racism, public space

Wes Shrum, professor, Department of Sociology

Contact: 225-578-5319 / 

Areas of expertise: Ritual disrobement at Mardi Gras, nudity, new traditions

Dek Terrell, LSU Economics & Policy Research Group executive director and LSU Department of Economics professor


Areas of expertise: Economic benefits of tourism and Mardi Gras, labor economics, public finance and applied environmental related studies

David Terry, associate professor, Department of Communication Studies Contact: 225-578-6838 /

Areas of expertise: Cultural performance, performance ethnography, oral history, new media, performance art, environmental performance, modern Greek studies, non-visible disability.

Carolyn Ware, associate professor, Department of English 

Contact: 225-578-3022 /    

Areas of expertise: Rural Cajun Mardi Gras celebrations, coastal folk culture (especially Plaquemines Parish), Louisiana Croatian folklife, human-animal relationships and veterinary culture

LSU Libraries Special Collections: The LSU Libraries have a number of collections related to Mardi Gras history and traditions:

Selection of articles covering this topic in the digitized Louisiana newspapers
LSU Libraries Mardi Gras Collection

For more information, contact LSU Libraries Special Collections at 225-578-6544 or