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J. David Maxson

J. David Maxson

Graduate Assistant in Communication Arts and Sciences

316 Sparks Building
University Park , PA 16802

Curriculum Vitae

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  1. B.A., Drury University, 2010
  2. M.A., Indiana University, 2013
  3. Ph.D., Penn State University, anticipated 2018


J. David Maxson studies commemorations of death and trauma in New Orleans, Louisiana. His dissertation will examine the ways that traumatic pasts are dredged up and transfigured in service of communal healing in New Orleans. Focusing primarily on the ways that local music, funerary rituals, landscapes, monuments, and sports participate in the rhetorical negotiation of public memory, Maxson’s research engages collective responses to disaster and the myriad ways that sundered communities are actively reimagined and reconstituted. His most recent work explores the role that jazz funeral traditions play as New Orleanian responses to personal and communal loss.

Advisor: Dr. Debra Hawhee