Ph.D. History, University of Southern California
M.A. History, California State University, Bakersfield
B.A. Journalism and History, University of Arizona
Location: LAS Building, Office 144
Phone: (702) 992-2625
Dr. La Chapelle teaches courses in U.S. political and cultural history, oral history methods, and the history of the American West, as well as the senior seminar in which history majors partake in an independent research project. A former Smithsonian Postdoctoral Fellow, Dr. La Chapelle is the author of Proud to Be an Okie: Cultural Politics, Country Music, and Migration to Southern California (University of California Press, 2007) which received an honorable mention for the Urban History Association's Kenneth Jackson Award for Best Book in Urban History. As part of the research for the book, La Chapelle uncovered the oldest known recordings of American folksinger Woody Guthrie, composer of the patriotic song This Land is Your Land. Those recordings and an essay by La Chapelle were released in 2012 as part of the Grammy-nominated Woody at 100: The Woody Guthrie Centennial Collection, a book and CD set from Smithsonian Folkways Records.
Dr. La Chapelle has contributed articles and book chapters to such publications as The Jewish Role in American Life: An Annual Volume (Purdue University Press, 2011), A Boy Named Sue: Gender and Country Music (University Press of Mississippi, 2004), and the fashion journal Dress (2001). He is working on a book on the history of country music and its intersection with politics for the University of Chicago Press.
In 2009, Dr. La Chapelle received NSC's top teaching honor, the campus-wide iTeach Award for Teaching Excellence. La Chapelle is a member of the Henderson Oral History Consortium.