David King Dunaway

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David King Dunaway
OccupationUniversity professor
EducationUniversity of California, Berkeley
Years activesince 1981

David King Dunaway is an American historian. He is a professor of English at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, New Mexico; he was previously on the faculty of San Francisco State University in San Francisco.[1]


David Dunaway's first book, How Can I Keep From Singing, the first biography of folk musician and social activist Pete Seeger, was based on his doctoral dissertation at the University of California, Berkeley, and first released in 1981. Since then, it has been translated into Japanese and Spanish and been through six printings. Working with Seeger, Dunaway completed a revised, updated version of the biography in 2008 from Villard Books/Random House.

In addition, Dunaway is also the editor of Oral History: An Interdisciplinary Anthology (with Willa Baum; second edition, Rowman & Littlefield, 1996), and the author of Huxley in Hollywood (Harper Collins, 1990), Writing the Southwest (with Sarah Spurgeon; revised edition, University of New Mexico Press, 2003), Aldous Huxley Recollected (AltaMira/Rowman & Littlefield, 1998), Across the Tracks: A Route 66 Story (in press), and Oral History on Route 66: A Manual (National Park Service, 2005). His most recent works are Singing Out: An Oral History of America's Folk Music Revivals (with Molly Beer; Oxford, 2010), A Pete Seeger Discography (Scarecrow Press/Rowman, 2011), and A Route 66 Companion (University of Texas Press, 2012) .

Radio Series[edit]

Dunaway has been active in radio since 1972, when he produced "Midnight Country" for KPFA-FM in Berkeley. Four of his radio documentary series were developed in conjunction with his writing – "Writing the Southwest" (1995) developed with funding from the NEH and the Humanities Endowments in Arizona, Colorado, and New Mexico; "Aldous Huxley's Brave New Worlds" (1998) funded by the California and New Mexico Endowments for the Humanities and Public Radio International; and "Across the Tracks: A Route 66 Story" (2001) which received awards from the International Radio Festival, the Associated Press, and a Silver Reel. In 2008-9, he produced "Pete Seeger" on PRI, three, one-hour documentaries airing on more than 300 stations and winning Best of Show: Audio from the Broadcast Education Association. He is currently a DJ for KUNM-FM in Albuquerque, NM.

Magazine and Journal Articles[edit]

Dunaway has written extensively for the popular media since 1973, with articles on music, social activism, and oral history appearing in venues from Mother Jones to the Village Voice and the New York Times. In 2004, his writing on the Danish government's efforts to derail the world's oldest experiment in anarchy, Christiania, was carried by the San Francisco Chronicleand National Public Radio's Morning Edition.

Dunaway also writes extensively for academic audiences, contributing his articles to scholarly journals such as the Oral History Review and The Public Historian, the Journal of American Folklore, Southwestern American Literature, and New Media and Society.

Current Projects[edit]

Dunaway works with the National Park Service's Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program. After a three-year research project locating, identifying, and cataloguing archives on Route 66, with a particular focus on oral history collections, he's now interviewing Route 66's historians and planning a nationwide project to interpret Route 66. He has recently completed an anthology, A Route 66 Companion. Dunaway is Professor of English and Communications (adjunct) at the University of New Mexico.


Dunaway's published materials include:

  • Dunaway, David King (1991). Huxley in Hollywood. Anchor Books. ISBN 9780385415910. OCLC 22278860.
  • Dunaway, David King (1999). Aldous Huxley Recollected: An Oral History. AltaMira. ISBN 9780761990642. OCLC 924860333.
  • Dunaway, David King; Spurgeon, Sara L (2003). Writing the Southwest. University of New Mexico Press. ISBN 9780826323361. OCLC 1049025646.
  • Dunaway, David King (2008) [1981]. How Can I Keep From Singing?: The Ballad of Pete Seeger. Villard. ISBN 9780345506085. OCLC 174501218.
  • A Pete Seeger Discography. Rowman & Littlefield Pub. Group. 2010. ISBN 9781282922396.
  • Dunaway, David King; Waldmire, Robert (2012). A Route 66 Companion. University of Texas Press. ISBN 9780292726604. OCLC 1053927392.
  • Dunaway, David King; Beer, Molly (2012). Singing Out: An Oral History of America's Folk Music Revivals. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780199896561. OCLC 756279284.

In 2008, Dunaway's biography of Pete Seeger (originally published in 1981) was re-released along with a three part audio series covering Seeger's life and music. According to reviewer Michael Huntsberger, the series also included "recordings of Charles Seeger (Pete's father), Leadbelly, and Woody Guthrie, and interviews with Pete Seeger's contemporaries," including a selection of Seeger's music.[2]


  1. ^ "Professor Guerra wins national awards for UCSF, SF Giants videos" SFSU News. Retrieved 2018-05-31.
  2. ^ Huntsberger, Michael W. (6 May 2010). "Dunaway, Pete Seeger—How Can I Keep From Singing? [audio documentary series review]". Journal of Radio & Audio Media. 17 (1): 129–130. doi:10.1080/19376521003733459. ISSN 1937-6529. S2CID 143326751.