|Sean Cunningham received his Ph.D. in May 2007.He teaches broadly in twentieth-century U.S. history, while specializing in the history of post-1945 American political culture. His geographic emphasis is on the American Sunbelt, Texas in particular. His first book, Cowboy Conservatism: Texas and the Rise of the Modern Right, was published by the University Press of Kentucky in 2010. His second book, tentatively titled The Contested Ascendancy: Sunbelt Politics since 1945, is under contract with Cambridge University Press.
Cunningham has presented his research at the Southern Historical Association, as well as several state and local conferences, and has published articles and numerous book reviews for the Journal of American History, Journal of Southern History, American Historical Review, and Southwestern Historical Quarterly, among others.
In 2012, Cunningham was selected as a recipient of the “Professing Excellence” award, presented by Texas Tech University Student Housing. In 2011, he was honored with the Department of History’s Distinguished Faculty Award. He was also honored with this award in 2008. In 2010, Cunningham was honored as the College of Arts & Sciences winner of the Texas Tech Alumni Association’s New Faculty Award. He was also nominated for this award in 2009. In 2007, he was awarded the Calvin A. VanderWerf Award in recognition of his selection as the outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant at the University of Florida, where he earned his Ph.D.