David McConnell

David McConnell

Professor of Anthropology (on leave 2016-17)

Department/Affiliation: East Asian Studies, Sociology and Anthropology
Phone: 330-263-2476
Office Address: 015 Kauke Hall


  • B.A., Earlham 1982
  • M.A., Ph.D., Stanford 1991

Courses Taught

  • ANTH 110: Introduction to Anthropology
  • ANTH 231: Peoples and Cultures: Amish
  • ANTH 231: Peoples and Cultures: Japan
  • SOAN 201: Education in Sociocultural Context
  • ANTH 231: Contemporary Anthropological Theory

Awards and Professional Memberships

  • Japan's prestigious Ohira Prize by the Masayoshi Ohira Memorial Foundation
  • A Spencer Fellowship from the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation
  • A Fulbright Grant
  • A Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowship
  • A Thomas J. Watson Fellowship


  • "Culture and Politics in the Anthropology of Japan." Reviews in Anthropology 40(4): 265-291, 2011.
  • An Amish Paradox: Diversity and Change in the World's Largest Amish Community (The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2010)
  • Soft Power Superpowers: National and Cultural Assets in Japan and the United States (M.E. Sharpe, 2008)
  • "No 'Rip Van Winkles' Here: Amish Education Since Wisconsin v. Yoder". Anthropology and Education Quarterly. 37(3): 236-254.
  • Importing Diversity: Inside Japan's JET Program (University of California Press, 2000)


He is a leading authority on Japanese society, culture, and education, as well as U.S.-Japanese relations. He has also conducted fieldwork on the relationship between education and modernity among the Maragoli people of Western Kenya and the Amish of northeast Ohio. His book, Importing Diversity: Inside Japan’s JET Program (University of California Press, 2000) was awarded Japan’s prestigious Ohira Prize in 2001. His most recent book (with Charles Hurst, Professor of Sociology, Emeritus) is An Amish Paradox: Diversity and Change in the World’s Largest Amish Community (Johns Hopkins, 2010). His teaching and research interests include anthropology and education, Amish and Japanese cultures, and contemporary anthropological theory.