David M. Wrobel

David M. Wrobel

Image credit: Travis Caperton, University of Oklahoma photographer

David M. Wrobel is a historian of American thought and culture and the American West. Dean of arts and sciences and at the University of Oklahoma, he also holds the Merrick Chair in Western History and the David L. Boren Professorship there and has been engaged in a wide range of partnerships with K-12 educators over the years. He is the author of The West and America, 1890–1950: A History (2017), Global West, American Frontier: Travel, Empire, and Exceptionalism, from Manifest Destiny to the Great Depression (2013), winner of the Western Heritage Award; Promised Lands: Promotion, Memory, and the Creation of the American West (2002); and The End of American Exceptionalism: Frontier Anxiety from the Old West to the New Deal (1993). He is currently working on "John Steinbeck's America: From the Great Depression to the Great Society." He is a past president of the Pacific Coast Branch of the American Historical Association as well as of Phi Alpha Theta, the national history honor society, and current president of the Western History Association.


  • John Steinbeck's America, I: The Great Depression Years *
  • John Steinbeck's America, II: Steinbeck and War, from World War II to Vietnam
  • The West and America, 1890–1950 *
  • Global West, American Frontier: Travelers' Accounts of the Nineteenth- and Twentieth-Century American West
  • A World of Clashing Darwinisms: Conservatism and Liberalism in Late Nineteenth-Century America and Today *
  • The Ghosts of Western Future and Past: Promotion, Memory, and the Creation of the American West from the Homestead Act to the Present
  • Causation: The Teacher's and Student's Nightmare
  • A Lesson from the Past: How K-12 and University Teachers Can Together Save History Education
  • Historiography as Pedagogy: Thoughts on the Messy Past and Why We Shouldn't Clean It Up

Lectures marked with a * are offered as part of the OAH's initiative, Historians' Perspectives on the Rise of Donald Trump.