Religious Studies

David Walsh

Associate Professor

Religious Studies



Campus Box 0408


Weidensall Hall
Room 311
300 North Washington St.
Gettysburg, PA 17325-1400


PhD Arizona State University, 2015
MA University of Colorado, Boulder, 2008
BA Colorado State University, 2004

Academic Focus

Indigenous Religions; Anthropology of Religion; Environmental Humanities; Intersections of Gender, Ethnicity, Decolonization, and Religion

David Walsh specializes in indigenous religious traditions, with particular interests in Native American relationships with their environment. Beginning with a Fullbright Fellowship in 2010, David has conducted extensive ethnographic work with the Dene people of subarctic Canada. David is fascinated by Dene relationships with caribou and other food animals, particularly how Dene negotiate these relationships in the era of climate change and greatly reduced caribou populations. David has also worked with many Indigenous Peoples and Nations including the Hopi, Navajo, and Yaqui in Arizona, the Lakota at Pine Ridge, South Dakota, and with Water Protectors at the #NoDAPL movement in Standing Rock, North Dakota.
David brings his research into the classroom through his publications, interests, and lots of stories. He teaches courses on Native American religions and also courses on the environment, on food, on colonialism and religious resistance movements, as well as a survey of religion in America and a course on Religious Studies theories and methods.
David earned a Ph.D. in Religious Studies from Arizona State University. He has a Masters degree in Religious Studies and earned a graduate certificate in Women and Gender Studies from the University of Colorado, Boulder, and a Bachelors degree from Colorado State University. David is currently writing a book manuscript based on his ethnographic work with the Dene. His other notable publications include:
  • “The Nature of Food: Indigenous Dene Foodways and Ontologies in the Era of Climate Change” in a special edition of Scripta Instituti Donneriani Aboensis on Religion and Food, 26 (2015):225-249.
  • “Feeding the Fire: Food and reciprocity among the Dene.” In Religious Studies and Theology, ed. Anne Vallely, 35 (2) 2016: 123-130.
  • “Babylon Inna Hopiland: Articulations of Tradition and Social Injustice by the Hopi Reggae Musician Casper Loma-da-wa.” In Indigenous Pop: Contemporary Native American Music from Jazz to Hip Hop, eds. Berglund, Jeff, Jan Johnson, and Kimberli Lee. Tucson: University of Arizona Press. 2016: 155-178.
  • "Spiritual not Religious, Dene not Indigenous: Dene Environmental Relationships as Local Traditions.” In The Brill Handbook of Indigenous Religion(s): Pathways—Being, Becoming, Back, eds. Johnson, Greg and Siv Ellen Kraft. city: Brill. 2017: 204:220.
  • And the forthcoming “‘They Call Us Caribou Eaters’: Negotiating Tlicho Dene Relationships with Caribou” in Native Foodways in a Global Economy, SUNY Press, edited by Michael J. Zogry.

Courses Taught