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null David Anderson, Ph.D.


Contact Info


Office Address:
Glasgow Hall, Room 382

Senior Lecturer

Expertise: U.S. Foreign Relations and National Security Policy


David L. Anderson is Senior Lecturer in the Department of National Security Affairs at the Naval Postgraduate School and Professor of History at California State University, Monterey Bay.  He was Dean of the College of University Studies and Programs at CSUMB from 2004 to 2007.  Previously he was Professor of History and Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Indianapolis, where he taught from 1981 to 2004.  He is past chairman of the Board of Directors of the Natividad Medical Foundation, past member of the Board of Advisors of the Fort Ord Alumni Association, and past president of the Board of Directors of Leadership Monterey Peninsula. 

Past president of the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations (SHAFR), he has served on the editorial boards of Diplomatic History and the Vietnam Documentation Project of the National Security Archive.  He is general editor of the book series, “Vietnam: America in the War Years,” published by Rowman and Littlefield.  He was Visiting Professor of History at Anhui Normal University in the People's Republic of China, and his forty-year career has also included teaching at the University of Montana, Texas Tech University, Sam Houston State University (Huntsville, Texas), and California Polytechnic State University (San Luis Obispo).

Dr. Anderson is the author or editor of eleven books: Imperialism and Idealism: American Diplomats in China (1985), Trapped by Success: The Eisenhower Administration and Vietnam (1991), Shadow on the White House: Presidents and the Vietnam War (1993), Facing My Lai: Moving Beyond the Massacre (1998), The Human Tradition in the Vietnam Era (2000), The Columbia Guide to the Vietnam War (2002), The Human Tradition in America since 1945 (2003), The Vietnam War (2005), The War That Never Ends: New Perspectives on the Vietnam War (2007), The Columbia History of the Vietnam War (2011), and The Lowdown:  A Short History of the Origins of the Vietnam War (2011).  Trapped by Success received the Robert H. Ferrell Book Prize from SHAFR.  The Columbia Guide to the Vietnam War earned a “Best of the Best” designation from the American Library Association and the American Association of University Presses.  That book and The Columbia History of the Vietnam War were recognized as Choice magazine “Outstanding Academic Titles.” His scholarship includes approximately 85 articles and reviews and more than 60 conference presentations.  The Council for the Advancement and Support of Education named him the CASE Professor of the Year for the state of Indiana in 1991.

He has a BA degree in history from Rice University and MA and PhD degrees in history from the University of Virginia.  He received the Bronze Star for service in the U.S. Army in Vietnam.

Teaching Interests:

US National Seurity Policy

History of Modern East Asia

Seminar on US Foreign Policy