Ph.D. in Ethnomusicology
David Dennen received a PhD in ethnomusicology from the University of California, Davis and a BA from Evergreen State College. He currently teaches at Chihlee University of Technology in Taiwan. His dissertation research was on the music and poetry of Odisha, India. His current research is on the history and ideas of American pragmatism and behaviorism.
Dennen’s primary research is on the music and literature of Odisha, India, where he has done extensive archival and ethnographic research. He regularly publishes articles and gives conference presentations on the culture of this region. Dennen’s dissertation was on the early nineteenth-century Odia/Sanskrit composition Kishorachandrananda Champu by Kabisurya Baladeba Ratha. The dissertation situates the work and its author within the context of the region’s Vaishnava-influenced court culture, analyzes it from literary and musical perspectives, and explores its reception in the twentieth century. A full translation of the work is also provided.
Dennen has been a musician for many years, primarily as a flutist and songwriter. He has trained in Western art and popular forms of music and has also studied Hindustani vocal and flute performance. His broader research interests include the evolution of popular and art song genres around the world and the relationship between music and literature.