Kevin Rozario

Associate Professor of American Studies

Kevin Rozario

Contact & Office Hours

Fall 2021
Monday and Thursday,
11:00 a.m.-12:00 noon;
or by appointment.

Wright Hall 233



Ph.D., Yale University

M.A., University of London

B.A., University of Warwick, U.K.


Kevin Rozario teaches courses in American popular culture, media studies and cultural theory. After receiving his doctorate in 1997, he taught at Oberlin and Wellesley colleges before coming to Smith.

Although trained as a historian, Rozario also maintains interdisciplinary interests that keep pulling him into such other fields as literary criticism, media studies, philosophy, economics, environmental history, gender studies, politics and cultural theory. He endeavors to incorporate many of these approaches into his writing.

Among other works, his book The Culture of Calamity: Disaster and the Making of Modern America won the 2008 Lois P. Rudnick Book Prize awarded by the New England American Studies Association. He makes occasional ventures into the media, including interviews with NPR, the BBC, the Chronicle of Higher Education and new media outlets like Alternet. In addition to critiquing culture, he sometimes attempts to produce it: writing, playing guitar and singing for Merchant Bankers—a local band that performs melodic, country‐inflected, occasionally dissonant, alternative pop. He also plays guitar in the American studies band The Distractions.

Selected Publications

Whatever Happened to the Underground? The Culture of Capitalism and the Paradoxes of Dissent. Forthcoming.

The Culture of Calamity: Disaster and the Making of Modern America. University of Chicago Press, 2007.

“Mass Culture, Sensationalism and the History of American Humanitarianism,” American Quarterly (2003).

Lead essay in the book The Resilient City: How Modern Cities Recover From Disaster. Edited by Lawrence Vale and Thomas Campanella. Oxford University Press, 2005.

"Rising From the Ruins." The Wall Street Journal (2010).