Rich Benjamin is the author of Searching for Whitopia: An Improbable Journey to the Heart of White America (Hachette Books), selected as an Editor’s Choice by Booklist and The American Library Association. Now in its second printing, this study is one of few to have illuminated in advance the social-political forces propelling the political rise of Donald Trump.
Having earned his doctorate in Modern Thought and Literature from Stanford University, Benjamin is a cultural translator: He aims to translate complex research in a distinct voice for general audiences and to translate ideas and cultural competencies across different nationalities, ranks, social backgrounds, and academic disciplines. As such, his work appears regularly in debate, including in The New York Times, The Guardian, The New Yorker, The New York Times Sunday Book Review and NPR. Benjamin has taught writing and/or the interdisciplinary humanities at Stanford University and Miami University of Ohio.
Benjamin’s literary citizenship includes serving as a Juror for the PEN Center’s John Kenneth Galbraith Book Award for Nonfiction in 2017. He also serves as a Board Member of the Authors Guild, the largest, oldest union of writers in the US that has been protecting authors’ creative interests and free speech since 1912.
This event is sponsored by the MFA for Poets and Writers, the UMass Amherst English Department, the W.E.B. Du Bois Library's Special Collections, and the Office of Equity and Inclusion.