Christopher Benfey tackles Mitford biography

Christopher Benfey, Andrew W. Mellon Professor of English.

By Christian Feuerstein

The six Mitford sisters are a source of seemingly never-ending fascination, but eldest sister Nancy often gets short shrift. 

Fortunately a new biography, “Life in a Cold Climate” puts Nancy front and center. Christopher Benfey, the Andrew W. Mellon Professor of English at Mount Holyoke, has reviewed it for The New York Times. 

“A stylish and well-informed writer, [Laura] Thompson brings a snobbishness of her own to her sympathetic account of Mitford’s life,” Benfey wrote. “One’s heart sinks with every mention of ‘nowadays,’ a sure signal that a reactionary opinion is about to be aired.”

Read the review. 

Related News

Benjamin Gebre-Medhin

Toward more equitable admissions

Mount Holyoke professor’s research finds that college admissions essays are even more strongly linked to socioeconomic status than test scores.

James Harold

The ethics of vaccine passports

Professor James Harold of Mount Holyoke’s philosophy department spoke to Western Mass News about the ethics of vaccine passports. 

Iyko Day

Anti-Asian violence continues to grow

Iyko Day, Mount Holyoke associate professor of English, talks about anti-Asian hate in America on NEPM’s Connecting Point.

This is a picture of Keven surprise, outside against a background of greenery. He has close cropped hair and glasses and is wearing a medium blue polo shirt.

Into the dark

Mount Holyoke’s Kevin Surprise cautions that a new push to use geoengineering to darken the sky and slow global warming outstrips international agreements.

These are side-by-side portraits of Assistant Professor of politics Adam Hilton and student Amelia Malpas.

Pandemic politics show leftward movement

The Democratic party’s progressive wing has found a moment amid the pandemic, says assistant professor Adam Hilton and Amelia Malpas ’22 at Mount Holyoke.

Find more stories >