The bibliography below is updated as new material becomes available and is selected for inclusion. The resources are books, essays, academic journal articles and general audience media articles. This bibliography does not list U2’s discography or filmography, which can be found on U2’s official site.
If you wish to recommend a resource for studying U2 or if you would like to speak with someone about your research project, please contact Director Scott Calhoun through the contact form.
Two books of collected essays, edited by Scott Calhoun, have come from previous U2 Conference gatherings:
- Exploring U2: Is This Rock ‘n Roll? (Rowman & Littlefield, 2011, 2014)
- U2 Above, Across, and Beyond: Interdisciplinary Assessments. Co-edited with Christopher Endrinal. (Rowman & Littlefield, 2014, 2015)
A book of collected essays on U2 and the Religious Impulse: Take Me Higher, edited by Scott Calhoun, will be out in February 2018 from Bloomsbury Press.
U2 STUDIES BIBLIOGRAPHY
Selected books, essays, and articles for studying U2
Maintained by Scott Calhoun
Updated: July 27, 2017
* * * *
Alan, Carter. Outside is America: U2 in the U.S. Boston: Faber and Faber, 1992.
—. U2: The Road to Pop. Boston: Faber and Faber, 1997 (1992).
Assayas, Michka. Bono: In Conversation. London: Riverhead, 2005.
Beard, Steve. “The Gospel of Heaven and Hell.” Spiritual Journey: How Faith Has Influenced Twelve Music Icons. Lake Mary, FL: Relevant Books, 2003. 237-238, 264.
Beeaff, Dianne Ebertt. A Grand Madness: Ten Years on the Road With U2. Tucson, AZ: Hawkmoon Publishing, 2000.
Bono. On The Move. Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, 2006.
Bordowitz, Hank, ed. The U2 Reader. Milwaukee: Hal Leonard Corporation, 2003.
Bowler, Dave and Dray, Bryan. U2: A Conspiracy of Hope. London: Pan Books, 1994 (1993).
Brocklebank, Patrick, Sinéad Molony. Where The Streets Have 2 Names. U2 and the Dublin Music Scene 1978-1981. Dublin: Liberties Press, 2013.
Brandt, Winston. U2. New York: Ballantine Books, 1986.
Brothers, Robyn. “Time to Heal, ‘Desire’ Time. The Cyber-prophesy of U2’s ‘Zoo World Order.’” In Reading Rock and Roll: Authenticity, Appropriation, Aesthetics, edited by Kevin J. H. Dettmar and William Richey, 237-267. New York: Columbia University Press, 1999.
Calhoun, Scott. “Bono’s Prophetic Vox. The Message Author Says U2’s Message is Refreshing, Faithful and Honest.” @U2. February 9, 2006.
—, ed. Exploring U2: Is This Rock ’N’ Roll? Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2011.
—. “The Legend of Bono Vox. Lessons Learned in the Church of U2.” Books & Culture November/December 2004. 10-14.
—, and Christopher Endrinal, eds. U2 Above, Across, and Beyond: Interdisciplinary Assessments. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2014.
—. “The @U2 Interview: Flood. Return to Zooropa.” 26 July, 2013. http://www.atu2.com/news/the-u2-interview-flood.html
—. “Where Could We Go From Here? The State of U2 Studies.” Books & Culture November/December 2009. 14-15.
Catanzarite, Stephen. Achtung Baby: Meditations On Love In The Shadow Of The Fall. New York: Continuum Books, 2007.
Chatterton, Mark. U2: The Complete Encyclopedia. UK: Fire Fly Publishing, 2001.
Chesher, Chris. “Becoming The Milky Way: Mobile Phones And Actor Networks At A U2 Concert.” Journal Of Media & Cultural Studies 21.2 (2007): 217-225.
Cogan, Visna. U2: An Irish Phenomenon. New York: Pegasus Books, 2007.
Corbin, Anton. U2&I: The Photographs: 1982-2004. Munich: Schirmer/Mosel, 2008.
Danielian, J. (2007). Sometimes melodies are not songs, they are ideas: The creative life of Bono and implications for talent development. Gifted Education International, 23(1), 102-113. Article available here.
DeCurtis, Anthony. 2001. “Bono: The Beliefnet Interview.” February 2001.
Deichmann, Joel. “Analysis of U2’s Concert Performance Location Choice: Application of an Adapted Gravity Model.” International Business Research. 7.11 (2014): 190-202. Article available here.
De La Parra, Pimm Jal. U2 Live: A Concert Documentary. London: Omnibus Press, 2003 (1994).
Dunphy, Eamon. Unforgettable Fire. New York: Warner Books, 1987.
Endrinal, Christopher. “Form and Style in the Music of U2.” PhD diss., Florida State University, 2008.
Farrell, Nathan. “Celebrity Politics: Bono, Product (RED) And The Legitimising Of Philanthrocapitalism.” British Journal Of Politics & International Relations 14.3 (2012): 392-406.
Fallon, B. P. U2: Faraway So Close. Boston: Little, Brown, 1994.
Fast, Susan. “Music, contexts, and meaning in U2.” In Expression in pop-rock music, edited by Walter Everett. New York: Routledge, 2008, 33-57.
Flanagan, Bill. U2 At the End of the World. New York: Delacorte Press, 1995.
Galbraith, Deane. “Drawing Our Fish in the Sand: Secret Biblical Allusions in the Music of U2.” Biblical Interpretation: A Journal of Contemporary Approaches 19:2 (2011): 181-222.
—. “Meeting God in the Sound: The Seductive Dimension of U2’s Future Hymns.” In The Counter-Narratives of Radical Theology and Rock ’n’ Roll: Songs of Fear and Trembling. Ed. Mike Grimshaw. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014. 119-135.
Garrett, Greg. We Get to Carry Each Other: The Gospel According to U2. Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2009.
Garvey, Amy, ed. U2: The Early Days. New York: Dell Publishing, 1989.
Gilmour, Michael. “The Prophet Jeremiah, Aung San Suu Kyi, and U2’s All That You Can’t Leave Behind: On Listening to Bono’s Jeremiad.” In Call Me the Seeker. Listening to Religion in Popular Music, edited by Michael Gilmour. 34-43. New York: Continuum, 2005.
Gittins, Ian. U2: The Best of Propaganda. New York: Thunder’s Mouth Press, 2003.
Godson, Lisa, Steve Averill, Shaughn McGrath. Stealing Hearts from a Travelling Show: The Graphic Design of U2. Dublin: Four5OneCreative, 2003.
Goodman, Sam. U2: Burning Desire. Chessington, Surrey: Castle Communications Place, 1993.
Graham, Bill. U2: The Early Days. New York: Delta, 1989.
— and Caroline van Oosten de Boer. U2: The Complete Guide to their Music. London: Omnibus Press, 2004.
Harris, Paul. “U2’s Creative Process: Sketching in Sound.” PhD diss., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2006.
Helme, Deborah. A Powerful Voice: The Story of Bono from U2. The Faith In Action Series. Norwich, Norfolk: RMEP, 2004.
Hewson, Paul. “Elvis: The White Nigger.” In Across the Frontiers: Ireland in the 1990s, edited by Richard Kearney. 188-191. Dublin: Wolfhound Press, 1988.
Holm-Hudson, Kevin. “Et Tu, U2? ‘Wake Up Dead Man’ and Bono’s Perceived Betrayal of the Faith.” Journal of Religion & Popular Culture 16:2 (2007).
Huliaras, Asteris and Nikolaos Tzifakis. “Personal Connections, Unexpected Journeys: U2 and Angelina Jolie in Bosnia.” Celebrity Studies. 6.4 (2015): 443-456.
Johnson, Fred. “U2, Mythology, and Mass-mediated Survival.” Popular Music and Society. 27:1 (2004): 79-87.
Johnston, Brian. “Haunted Spaces: An Examination of Alternative Memorialization Practices via U2’s ‘Sunday, Bloody Sunday’.” Journal of Communications Media Studies. Vol. 7, 2015: 29-46.
Jones, Dyln, Ralph Larmann. From The Ground Up. U2 360° Tour Official Photobook. London: Preface Publishing, 2012.
Kärki, Kimi. Pop Art to PopMart: “Gendered Stadium Stardom Aesthetics and Stage Designer Mark Fisher’s Creative Work Process.” In Sounds of the Overground: Selected Papers from a Postgraduate Colloquium on Ubiquitous Music in Everyday Life, edited by Nedim Hassan and Holly Tesser. Turku, Finland: International Institute for Popular Culture, 2010.
Lizie, Arthur. Dreaming the World: U2 Fans, Online Community and Intercultural Communication. New York: Hampton Press, 2009.
Lomonaco, Barbara. “Queuing Among U2 Fans: Reactions to Social Norm Violations.” Journal of Applied Social Psychology. 38.9 (2008): 2378–2393. Available online here.
Mackey‐Kallis, Susan. “’How long to sing this song?’ The rhetorical vision of U2’s ‘Holy’ Community.” Popular Music and Society. 14.3 (1990): 51-58.
Marsh, Clive, and Vaughan S. Roberts. “Soundtracks of Acrobatic Selves: Fan-Site Religion in the Reception and Use of the Music of U2.” Journal of Contemporary Religion 26, 2011, 419-432.
Maynard, Beth and Whiteley, Raewynne J., eds. Get Up Off Your Knees. Preaching the U2 Catalog. Cambridge, MA: Cowley Publications, 2003.
McCormick, Neil. Killing Bono. New York: Pocket Books, 2004.
— and U2. U2 By U2. London: HarperCollins Publishers, 2006.
McLaughlin, Noel. “Bono! Do You Ever Take Those Wretched Sunglasses Off?: U2 And The Performance Of Irishness.” Popular Music History 4.3 (2009): 309-331.
—. “Post-punk Industrial Cyber Opera? The Ambivalent and Disruptive Hybridity of Early 1990s’ U2.” In Music and Identity in Ireland and Beyond, edited by Mark Fitzgerald and John O’Flynn. Surrey, UK: Ashgate, 2014. 1779-202.
—, Martin McLoone. Rock and Popular Music in Ireland: Before and After U2. Dublin: Irish Academic Press, 2012.
McFlicker, Todd. All You Need is Love to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb. How the Beatles & U2 Changed the World. New York: Continuum, 2007.
McGee, Matt. U2: A Diary. 2nd ed. New York: Omnibus, 2011.
McPherson, Alan. The World and U2: One Band’s Remaking of Global Activism. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2015.
Murphy, Debra Dean. “’Beautiful Day’ or ‘Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For’? The Wisdom of U2charist in Congregational Worship.” Liturgy. 28.3 (2013): 25-32.
Negativland. Fair Use: The Story of the Letter U and the Numeral 2. Concord, CA: Seeland, 1995.
Neufeld, Timothy D. U2: Rock ‘n’ Roll to Change the World. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2017.
Nigro, Nicholas, ed. The Spirituality of Bono: A Book of Inspiring Quotes. Milwaukee, WI: Hal Leonard / Backbeat Books, 2014.
Pinkston, Dan. “U2 And Igor Stravinsky: Textures, Timbres, And The Devil.” Christian Scholar’s Review 41.2 (2012): 147-162.
Ponte, Stefano, Lisa Ann Richey, and Mike Baab. “Bono’s Product (RED) Initiative: Corporate Social Responsibility That Solves the Problems of ‘Distant Others.'” Third World Quarterly 30:2 (2009): 301-317.
Quinn, Steven. “U2 and the Performance of (a Numb) Resistance.” Social Semiotics 9:1 (1999): 67-83.
Ramert, Lynn. “A Century Apart: The Personality Performances of Oscar Wilde in the 1890s and U2’s Bono in the 1990s.” Popular Music and Society. 32:4 (2009): 447–460.
Richey, Lisa Ann, and Stefano Ponte. “Better (Red)™ Than Dead? Celebrities, Consumption and International Aid.” Third World Quarterly 29:4 (2008): 711-729.
—. Brand Aid: Shopping Well to Save the World.Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press, 2011.
Scharen, Christian. One Step Closer. Why U2 Matters to Those Seeking God. Grand Rapids, MI: Brazos Press, 2006.
Scrimgeour, Diana. U2 Show. New York: Riverhead Books, 2004.
Seales, Chad E. “Burned Over Bono: U2’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Messiah and His Religious Politic.” Journal of Religion & Popular Culture 14:1 (2006).
Shirley, Jackie. U2. Stanford, Connecticut: Longmeadow Press, 1993.
Shruers, Fred. “U2.” Music Sound Output. December 1984: 40, 41-46.
Snow, Mat. U2: Revolution. New York: Race Point Publishing, 2014.
Stein, Atara. “Epipsychidion, Achtung Baby, and the Teaching of Romanticism.” Popular Culture Review 6:1 (1995): 29-44.
—.“’Even Better Than the Real Thing.’ U2’s (Love) Songs of the Self.” In Reading Rock and Roll: Authenticity, Appropriation, Aesthetics edited by Kevin J. H. Dettmar and William Richey, 269-286. New York: Columbia University Press, 1999.
Stockman, Steve. Walk On. The Spiritual Journey of U2. Relevant Media Group, Inc., 2005.
Stokes, Niall. U2: Into the Heart. New York: Thunder’s Mouth Press, 2003 (1996).
—, ed. U2 In Dublin: 1978-1983. A Hot Press Original Title for U2.com. 2014.
—, ed. The U2 File. Dublin: Hot Press, 1985.
— and Liam Mackey, eds. U2: Three Chords and the Truth. New York: Harmony Books, 1989.
Thomas, Dave. U2: Stories for Boys. London, UK: Bobcat Books, 1986.
Trachtenberg , Martha. Bono: Rock Star Activist. Berkley Heights, NJ: Enslow, 2008.
Traub, James. “The Statesman.” The New York Times Magazine. September 18, 2005: 80+.
Tyrangiel, Josh. “The Constant Charmer.” Time. December 26, 2005/January 2, 2006 2005: 46,47-71.
U2: The Ultimate Compendium of Interviews, Articles, Facts and Opinions from the Files of Rolling Stone. Editors of Rolling Stone. New York: Hyperion/Rolling Stone Press, 1994.
Uncut Presents U2. Legends #3. Vol. 1, Issue 3. (Special issue dedicated to U2.) 2004.
Vagacs, Robert. Religious Nuts, Political Fanatics. Eugene, OR: Cascade Books, 2005.
VanderSpek, Henry. Faith, Hope & U2. Toronto: Digory Designs, 2000.
Washburn, Kim. Breaking Through by Grace: The Bono Story Grand Rapids, MI: Zonderkidz/Zondervan, 2010.
Waters, John. Race of Angels. London: Fourth Estate Limited, 1994.
Williams, Michael. “One but not the same: U2 Concerts, Community and Cultural Identity,” in Udo Merkel (ed.) Identity Discourses and Communities in International Events, Festivals and Celebrations. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015. 242-259.
—. “Politics as spectacle: U2’s 360° tour (2009-11),” in Udo Merkel (ed.) Power, Politics and International Events: Socio-cultural Analyses of Festivals and Spectacles. London: Routledge, 2014. 174-190.
Williams, Peter and Steve Turner. U2 Rattle and Hum: The Official Book of the U2 Movie. New York: Harmony Books, 1988.
Wrathall, Mark A., ed. U2 and Philosophy. Popular Culture and Philosophy Series. Vol. 21. Illinois: Open Court, 2006.