Steve Gorelick’s graduate work (M.A., Ed.M. Columbia University, 1981; Ph.D., Sociology/Criminology, CUNY Graduate Center, 1995) and subsequent research has focused on theory and history of art, media and culture, sociology, and criminology. His major research interest is the representation of crime and violence in media and culture, with special emphasis on the impact of high profile acts of violence on communities, media institutions and the fabric of social life.

In 2014, Steve was invited by the Society for Contemporary Craft in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to author the catalog essay — “Utoya Reckoning: On Craft and Culture as a Response to Catastrophe” — for the museum’s international art exhibition ENOUGH Violence: Artists Speak Out, featuring over 40 works by US and European contemporary artists. The exhibition also included his lecture “Catastrophe and the Creative Impulse: Art, Craft, and Sense-Making in the Age of Terror.

In May, 2012, he was invited to Norway to join a group of academics examining the social and legal impact of the July, 2011 mass murders on Utoya Island and June, 2012 trial of defendant Anders Breivik.

An advisor to governments and agencies on crisis communications during and after high profile acts of crime and violence; he serves on the governing council of John Jay College of Criminal Justice’s Academy for Critical Incident Analysis (ACIA), an interdisciplinary research center examining the public’s ability to cope with high-profile critical incidents. He also serves on the editorial board of  The Journal of Gender and Violence and has served as a consultant to the research division of NBC News. His essay  The Dynamics of Critical Incidents in the Age of New Media: Examining the Role of the Self-Appointed or Media-Anointed Expert is included in the most recent edition of the Handbook of Critical Incident Analysis, a collection of essays examining the social impact of sudden high-profile incidents of violence and disaster on society and culture.

He now serves on the Advisory Council of the Dart Center on Journalism and Trauma at the Columbia University School of Journalism, a global network of journalists, journalism educators and mental health professionals dedicated to improving media coverage of trauma, conflict and tragedy.

His columns and essays have appeared in the International Herald Tribune,  The Christian Science Monitor, the Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, the Chronicle of Higher Education, and the Los Angeles Times.

In March 2005, he was invited to visit Spain as a delegate to The Club of Madrid’s International Summit on Terrorism and Democracy, where he spoke about the challenges faced by democratic institutions during high profile incidents of crime, violence, and human rights violations.  In 2007, he was selected by the German Fulbright Commission to participate in the German Studies Seminar.

Steve has been the primary sponsor for a number of MFA theses including documentary films, installations, and web-based projects. He also serves on the faculty of Hunter College’s program in Human Rights.

  • Title: Distinguished Lecturer
  • Office: 402A Hunter North
  • Office hours: By appointment; contact via email for prompt response
  • Phone: 212-650-3089
  • Email: sgorelick@hunter.cuny.edu
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  • Reading List: Beckett, Samuel. The Letters of Samuel Beckett. Vols. 1 & 2. 1929 - 1956. Cambridge University Press, 2009.
    Burns, Charles. Black Hole: A Graphic Novel. Pantheon, 2005.
    Carr, David. The Night of the Gun. Simon and Schuster, 2008.
    Cohen, Stanley. Folk Devils and Moral Panics. Routledge, 2002.
    Crowe, Cameron. Conversations With Wilder. Knopf, 2001.
    Cullen, Dave. Columbine. Twelve Publishers, 2009.
    Darnton, Robert. The Great Cat Massacre and Other Episodes in French Cultural History. Basic Books, 1984.
    Ellroy, James. My Dark Places. Vintage, 1997.
    Fink, Sheri. Five Days at Memorial. Crown, 2013.
    Gay, Peter. Modernism: The Lure of Heresy. 2007. Vintage Books, 2009.
    Glover, Jonathan. Humanity: A Moral History of the 20th Century. Yale University, 2001.
    Klemperer, Victor. I Will Bear Witness: A Diary of the Nazi Years. Modern Library, 1999.
    McElhaney, Joe. Albert Maysles: Contemporary Film Directors. University of Illinois, 2004.
    Mirzoeff Nicholas. The Visual Culture Reader Routledge, 2002.
    Mitchell, W.J.T. Picture Theory: Essays on Verbal and Visual Representation. University of Chicago, 1994.
    Roth, Philip. American Pastoral. Vintage International, 1998.
    Roth, Philip. The Plot Against America. Vintage International, 2005.
    Satrapi, Marjane. Persepolis. Pantheon, 2004.
    Sebald, W.G. Austerlitz. Random House, 2001. http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/books/2011/12/why-you-should-read-w-g-sebald.html
    Sontag, Susan. Illness as Metaphor & AIDS and Its Metaphors. Picador, 2001.
    Sontag, Susan. On Regarding the Pain of Others.Picador, 2004.
    Spiegelman, Art. Maus. Pantheon, 1986.
    Trimborn, Jurgen. Leni Riefenstahl. Farrar, Straus, 2002.