Research and Creative Interests
- cinema & media theory and criticism
- Critical Theory
- Cultural Studies
- Digital Media Cultures
- Dissent and Protest Cultures
- legal anthropology and area studies
- media activism
- popular culture
- Qualitative Research
- Sound Studies
David A. McDonald is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Folklore and Ethnomusicology. Since 2002, he has worked closely with Palestinian refugee communities in Israel, Jordan, the West Bank, and North America. While trained in ethnomusicology, he has published widely on Palestinian popular culture, focusing specifically on the dynamics of trauma, violence, exile, and media.
He is the author and co-editor of five books, including My Voice is My Weapon: Music, Nationalism, and the Poetics of Palestinian Resistance (Duke 2013); Palestinian Music and Song: Expression and Resistance since 1900 (IU Press 2013); At the Crossroads of Music and Social Justice (IU Press 2022); Festival Activism (IU Press 2024); and Holy Land Five: Palestinian Charity in the US “War on Terror” (forthcoming 2024).
In addition, McDonald is the recipient of several major research awards, including the 2014 Chicago Folklore Prize; the 2014 Jaap Kunst Prize; the 2023 Koskoff Prize; and the 2023 Nettl Prize (Honorable Mention).