Joaquin Bratton-Benfield

Joaquin Bratton-Benfield

Research Interest

I am a historian with an interest in public policy and social justice. I was born in Chicago, Illinois, and grew up in Oakland, California, and Boston, Massachusetts. In the Spring of 2021, I graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Southern California with a BA in History. During my undergraduate studies, I focused on Modern United States history, especially looking at the Federal Bureau of Investigation's operations against leftist groups in the mid-twentieth century under the Counter Intelligence Program. Outside of academia, I have worked in city politics, arts non-profits, and cyber security research. I find that this work experience converges
with my interest in privacy, individual rights, and American policing institutions.

At Columbia and LSE, I hope to explore new topics and periods of history while also pursuing my interest in the FBI and the Counter Intelligence Program. I hope to center this research in an international framework by using the backdrop of the Cold War and the FBI Director, J. Edgar Hoover's, rhetoric around the Cold War to find new meaning in the Counter Intelligence Program and its effects, globally, on leftist groups at the time.