Andrew Ross is a social activist and Professor of Social and Cultural Analysis at NYU. A contributor to the Guardian, the New York Times, The Nation, Artforum, Jacobin, London Review of Books, and Al Jazeera, he is the author or editor of 25 books and more than 250 articles on a wide variety of topics—labor and work, urbanism, politics, technology, environmental justice, alternative economics, music, film, TV, art, architecture, and poetry. His articles have appeared in newspapers and magazines as well as in academic and public interest journals, and his books are published by mainstream trade, academic, and independent presses. He has lectured at hundreds of universities and cultural institutions in North America, Europe, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East, and Australia. Politically active in many movement fields, he is the co-founder of several groups–Gulf Labor Artists Coalition, Global Ultra Luxury Faction, Coalition for Fair Labor, Occupy Student Debt Campaign, Strike Debt, the Debt Collective, and Decolonize This Place—and is an organizer with others, including the American Association of University Professors and the US Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel.
A native of Scotland, and supporter of Scottish independence, Ross has lived in the US since 1980, and in New York City since 1990. His preferred identity is “New Yorker.” His partner, Margaret Gray, is a political scientist, and author of Labor and the Locavore. Educated at Aberdeen University, University of Kent at Canterbury, Indiana University, and the University of California, Berkeley, Ross has held teaching and research positions at Princeton, Cornell, Rochester, CUNY, and Shanghai, in addition to NYU, where he joined the faculty in 1993 to direct the American Studies Program.
Ross’s books include Cars and Jails: Freedom Dreams, Debt, and Carcerality, Sunbelt Blues: The Failure of American Housing, Stone Men: The Palestinians Who Built Israel (winner of a Palestine Book Award), Creditocracy and the Case for Debt Refusal, Bird On Fire: Lessons from the World’s Least Sustainable City, Nice Work If You Can Get It: Life and Labor in Precarious Times, Fast Boat to China: Corporate Flight and the Consequences of Free Trade–Lessons from Shanghai, Low Pay, High Profile: The Global Push for Fair Labor, No-Collar: The Humane Workplace and its Hidden Costs, The Celebration Chronicles: Life, Liberty, and The Pursuit of Property Value in Disney’s New Town, Real Love: In Pursuit of Cultural Justice, The Chicago Gangster Theory of Life: Nature’s Debt to Society, Strange Weather: Culture, Science and Technology in the Age of Limits, and No Respect: Intellectuals and Popular Culture
In several of his books, Ross has pioneered a method he calls “scholarly reporting,” which is a blend of investigative journalism and ethnography. The American Studies graduate program he has directed on and off for the last three decades has produced many students who specialize in innovative methods. In his recently published, Under Conditions Not of Our Choosing, he reflects on the challenge of combining activism with writing and scholarship. Of his politics, Ross describes himself as a left eclectic, “allergic to despair,” who draws on the legacy of several traditions: socialism, anarchism, left-libertarianism, radical democracy, and decolonial justice. In his spare time, he is a supporter of Liverpool F.C.