David Stephen Bennett earned his Ph.D. in History from Michigan State University. He studied Modern American History with Dr. Michael Stamm and Dr. Kirsten Fermaglich. He studied African American History with Dr. Pero Dagbovie, and he studied the History of Science, Medicine, and Technology with Dr. Helen Veit. His dissertation, Framing Atlanta: Local Newspapers’ Search for a Nationally Appealing Racial Image (1920-1960), is an interrogation of Atlanta media and civil rights history during those four decades. He earned his M.A. from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette where he served as editor-in-chief of the department journal and received a number of honors and awards. His M.A. thesis, Birth of a Virtual Battleground: Television and the Desegregation Crises of 1957 and 1960, was nominated to represent the university for the Conference of Southern Graduate Schools Master’s Thesis Award in Social Sciences.
He has taught a wide variety of courses for Michigan State University, Lake Superior State University, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, and South Louisiana Community College. He has been awarded with fellowships, scholarships, and assistantships from both Michigan State University and the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. He has worked directly with fellow scholars Dr. Michael Stamm, Dr. Peter Beattie, Dr. Emily Conroy Krutz, and Dr. Charles Keith. He assisted in the digitization of physical records for the Vietnam Group Archive, which is funded by the National Endowment of the Humanities.
His current research focuses on investigating the news media’s representation of urban identity during the civil rights era. This research has garnered a number of awards including the Madison A. Kuhn Award, the Rose Library Fellowship, and the Hugh F. Rankin Prize. His article, “The Televised Revolution: ‘Progressive’ Television Coverage of the 1960 New Orleans School Desegregation Crisis,” appeared in Louisiana History, as did his book review of Darryl Mace’s In Remembrance of Emmett Till: Regional Stories and Media Responses to the Black Freedom Struggle. His research has spawned a number of digital public history projects, aggregated at Visualizing Southern Television, exploring the changes in television station distribution throughout the South between 1946 and 1966.