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Jennifer Wilson to Lead the Arts and Culture Subject Concentration

  • By Newmark J-School Staff
Jennifer Wilson
Jennifer Wilson

Jennifer Wilson has been named the next director of the Arts and Culture Reporting Program at the Newmark Graduate School of Journalism, Dean Sarah Bartlett announced today.

She is a contributing writer at The Nation, a frequent contributor to The New Republic, and has freelanced extensively for publications such as Vogue, The New Yorker, The Paris Review, The Atlantic, Art in America, Pitchfork, The Guardian, Slate, and The New York Times.

She succeeds Janice Simpson, a longtime faculty member who has directed the Arts and Culture concentration for a number of years.

“One of the many aspects of Jennifer’s background that impressed the search committee was the breadth of her cultural coverage,” Bartlett wrote in her announcement to the J-School community. “She has covered fashion, music, film, books, fine arts, and Internet culture. She is particularly proud of her ability to connect arts and culture to ongoing news stories about topics as wide-ranging as Europe’s migrant crisis, anti-Asian racism during the pandemic, and racial politics.”

Bartlett also said Wilson is comfortable integrating technology into her work. “Traditional art critics are now being tasked to write about NFTs and TikTok ‘vibes,'” she wrote in her cover letter. “Email newsletters have become an essential forum for literary criticism. I interviewed an author entirely on Twitter.”

Wilson earned her B.A. in Russian Literature and Culture at Columbia University and obtained her Ph.D. in Russian Literature from Princeton, where she also earned a Graduate Certificate in Gender and Sexuality Studies.

For the past few years, she has been an adjunct professor at Barnard College and prior to that, she taught courses at the University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University, the University of the Arts, the University of Utrecht, and Russian State University for the Humanities.

In her application for the position, she said she was particularly keen to work at a public university with a diverse student body: “As a woman of color from a working-class background, I am passionate about working to foster a more inclusive industry specifically in the arts media sector.”

She will begin working at the J-School in August and will spend the fall semester reviewing the current curriculum, getting to know the third-semester arts and culture students, and doing outreach to the incoming class. She is also looking forward to working with the concentration’s talented and dedicated adjuncts.