Brian Michael Murphy
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“Well written, thoughtful, and provocative. We the Dead is intellectually engaging and fascinating—I can honestly think of very few books like it.”
—Tung-Hui Hu, author of A Prehistory of the Cloud
"We the Dead is the rare book that opens new lines of investigation while also entertaining and provoking the reader. Some of the historical case studies that Brian Murphy unearthed (gas chambers for rare books! durable metal film strips! atomic bomb–tested filing cabinets!) were so outrageous and profound that I found myself laughing out loud while reading. It was a shock of recognition. . . . We are already the dead of the book’s title, whether we like it or not.”
—Brian Hochman, author of The Listeners: A History of Wiretapping in the United States
Photo: Hilary Clark
Brian Michael Murphy is Dean of the College and Director of the MFA in Public Action at Bennington College, and currently a Fulbright Scholar at the Università degli Studi Di Napoli "L'Orientale" in Italy, where he is teaching in the graduate program in American Literature. His book, We the Dead: Preserving Data at the End of the World, will be published by the University of North Carolina Press in 2022. His poems and essays have appeared in Narrative, Waxwing, Kenyon Review, Mississippi Review, Media-N, Fairy Tale Review, Kweli, and in Italian translation in Ácoma. His short story "Now Playing," commissioned by Amsterdam-based label Rucksack Records, was recently published as liner notes for the album Ancient Methods. He holds a PhD in Comparative Studies from The Ohio State University, where he was a Presidential Fellow, and his work has been supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Vermont Arts Council, the Tinker Foundation and the Ohio Arts Council. In spring 2020, he helped relaunch Northwest Review, where he is the Managing and Nonfiction Editor, and last summer he served as Curriculum Director for the Kenyon Review Young Writers Workshop, where he had previously taught for several years. He is a founding board member of Outpost, a residency for creative writers of color from the United States and Latin America. He lives in Vermont with his family.