Field: United States
Advisor: Casey Blake
Ben Serby is a student in the field of U.S. History, focusing on intellectual and political history in the 20th century. He grew up in the New York City metro area, and received his BA with highest honors from Brandeis University in 2010. His undergraduate thesis, "The Scientific Ideologist: Lewis Feuer and the Marxist Roots of Neoconservatism," explored the changing politics of the "New York intellectuals" from the Great Depression through the 1970s. Research interests include the history of the radical left; the relationship between social movements and social theory; the history of sexuality, gender, the family, and personal life; and the history of New York City. His dissertation is a study of the concept of "liberation" in the youth counterculture and radical movements of the 1960s and 1970s.
Ben's writing has appeared in SOCIETY and the blogs of The Society for US Intellectual History and the Gotham Center for NYC History. In 2016, he was awarded a History In Action HAPA grant to complete an online exhibition about the life and work of the historian Richard Hofstadter drawn from archival materials and previously unpublished documents. He is a 2016-2017 Andrew W. Mellon Predoctoral Fellowship in Museum Education at the Museum of the City of New York, where he teaches young children about social movements and urban history, and has worked on programming for the exhibition Gay Gotham: Art and Underground Culture in New York City.