Joshua Bennett


Joshua Bennett is an American writer and professor born in Yonkers, New York. Bennett’s academic performance in middle school earned him a scholarship to a choice private high school, where he was one of very few Black students. He would spend four hours every school day commuting on the bus and train–time he would spend reading, nurturing his growing passion for literature. Bennett’s impressive academic resume is made up of a dual BA in English and Africana Studies from the University of Pennsylvania (where he graduated magna cum laude), a Theatre Performance Studies M. from the University of Warwick that he earned as a Marshall scholar in the U.K., and an MA and PhD in English from Princeton University. Bennett was a junior fellow at Harvard University and a visiting lecturer at schools like the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of Pittsburgh before becoming a professor of English and creative writing at Dartmouth University, where he currently works. Bennett’s academic research focus is broad and covers topics such as African American literature of the 20th and 21st centuries, Black poetics, and environmental studies. His personal writing and poetry pulls from his knowledge of African American history and literary tradition and explores topics of race and class, with his experiences navigating being a Black student in a majority white high school and a Black professor in a historically white industry also holding much relevance in his writing. He has made appearances to perform his work at the White House for President Barack Obama, the Sundance Film Festival, and at the NAACP Image Awards, where he was a finalist for his poetry. Bennett is the author of two collections of poetry, The Sobbing School (2016) and Owed (2020), and a book of literary criticism titled Being Property Once Myself: Blackness and the End of Man (2020). Source

Photo Credit: Kathy Ryan