Defend democracy in the South.

Benjamin Barber

Democracy Program Coordinator

Benjamin Barber is the democracy program coordinator at the Institute for Southern Studies, a contributing writer for Facing South, and a graduate of the School of Social Policy & Practice at the University of Pennsylvania. He also holds a bachelor's degree in history from Barton College in Wilson, North Carolina. Benjamin previously interned with the Equal Justice Initiative in Alabama and with Facing South, and he served as the historian for the North Carolina NAACP Youth and College Division. His research focuses on voting rights, democracy, and Southern history.

 
Email Benjamin Barber

Articles by Benjamin Barber

Criminalizing voters in Southern states

January 27, 2023 - Republican state lawmakers across the South are creating harsh new penalties for even minor voting infractions — an effort that advocates worry could curb the surge in electoral participation the region has experienced in recent years.

Refusing to normalize voter suppression

December 14, 2022 - While observers are still grappling to understand the full impact of restrictive voting policies on the 2022 midterm election, voting rights advocates are fiercely challenging the notion that high turnout means there was no voter suppression — and continuing their calls for new federal voting rights legislation.

New South rising: LaTosha Brown on tilling the soil for political progress

October 12, 2022 - For decades, the co-founder of the Black Voters Matter Fund has led voter organizing campaigns across the South and helped lay the groundwork for Democratic wins in Georgia's 2020 presidential and U.S. Senate elections. She talked with Facing South about mobilizing for the midterms, misconceptions about the South and the region's Black voters, and building a genuine multiracial democracy.

Neil Volz on tearing down barriers to vote for returning citizens

September 14, 2022 - As deputy director of the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition, Volz was a leader in the fight to pass Amendment 4, which returned the right to vote to over a million Floridians with past felony convictions. He talked with Facing South about Florida's ongoing attacks on returning citizens, mobilization for the midterm elections, and the future of the movement to end felony disenfranchisement.