Benjamin Hedin's fiction, essays, and interviews have been published by The New Yorker, The Atlantic, Slate, The Nation, The Oxford American, The Chicago Tribune, Poets and Writers, Salmagundi, The Georgia Review, and other publications. He is the editor of Studio A: The Bob Dylan Reader, and producer and writer of the documentary Two Trains Runnin'. His nonfiction chronicle, In Search of the Movement: The Struggle for Civil Rights Then and Now, was published in March of 2015.
Hedin was born in Paris, France, and raised in North Carolina and Minnesota. He studied music at the College of William and Mary and fiction at the Graduate Writing Program of The New School in New York City. After earning his M.F.A. he started teaching, first at Long Island University and The New School, later in the Expository Writing Program at New York University. He currently teaches at the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University. A founding director of the Charleston Civil Rights Film Fest, Hedin is the son of Robert Hedin, the award-winning poet and translator.
The New Yorker: Revisiting Robert Penn Warren’s Civil-Rights Interviews
The Oxford American: John Coltrane’s Spiritual High Point
The Oxford American: It Had to Be Memphis
The Chicago Tribune: Review of The Promise and the Dream by David Margolick
The New Yorker: Postscript: The Radical Criticism of William Gass
Grammys: Two Trains Runnin' nominated for Best Music Film
Rolling Stone: Inside the Making of Two Trains Runnin'
The New Yorker: Remembering Martin Luther King Jr.'s "Beyond Vietnam" Speech
The Oxford American: An Interview with Dan Auerbach
The Oxford American: Picking Up the Piedmont Blues
Chicago Tribune: The Life of Robert Moses
"Benjamin Hedin went looking for the civil rights movement's past, but he also ran smack into the present, which can suddenly look like the past and then just as suddenly look totally different. By bringing stirring people like Septima Clark into focus, Hedin does what good historians do, but by entwining history with current events, he does a lot more. Here is a haunting meditation on living in history as well as with it."
— Sean Wilentz
praise for Benjamin Hedin
praise for Benjamin Hedin
"Fusing the personal with the political, the present with the past, Benjamin Hedin has written a sober, touching elegy for our shared history. In Search of the Movement is needed and essential, and it could not have come at a better time."
— Saïd Sayrafiezadeh, author, Brief Encounters With the Enemy and When Skateboards Will Be Free
"A deeply intelligent writer and reporter, Benjamin Hedin repositions the civil rights movement as an ongoing crusade, a moral and political struggle that was seeded in the 1950s and 60s, but continues to develop in complicated, hopeful, and heartbreaking ways. In Search of the Movement is a bold and exploratory book, as much about Hedin’s journey – to reconcile an American past with the American present – as anything else. It reads like both a salve and guide for these heady times; I couldn’t put it down."
— Amanda Petrusich, author, Do Not Sell at Any Price: The Wild, Obsessive Hunt for the World’s Rarest 78 rpm Records