November 6, 2012
Daniel Denvir is a freelance reporter. Prior to that, He was a staff writer at Salon and the Philadelphia City Paper and a contributing writer at the Atlantic’s CityLab.
My work has appeared in The New York Times, The Nation, Vox, Jacobin, Al Jazeera America, VICE, and The New Republic.
He writes about urban and metropolitan issues including education, segregation, race, economic inequality, criminal justice, immigration and the media.
He collaborates with photographer Zoe Strauss on this fellowship.
Daniel Denvir and photographer Zoe Strauss have just published a piece in CityLab about Detroit’s need for a migrant workforce and the city’s parallel deportations of undocumented immigrants.
You can read the article on the website of CityLab.
The Philadelphia City Paper published an article and photos by Zoe Strauss and Daniel Denvir on its first page.
The story focuses on the booming South Asian community in the small town of Millbourne, PA. You can read the full story on The Philadelphia City Paper‘s website.
He lives in Providence, Rhode Island.
You can learn more about his work by visiting his webiste.
Why does immigration reporting matter today?
Immigration is a long-running, constantly changing, and often misunderstood phenomenon. Immigrants are the most visible manifestation of a world and country undergoing rapidly transformation and so the media has a duty to explain who they are and why they are here.
What resources would you recommend on the topic?
I think the best resource on immigration are immigrants themselves. Fortunately for American readers, immigrants are not hard to find. Dine at a local restaurant that serves a largely immigrant clientele. Visit a church, mosque or temple where immigrants worship. Volunteer at an organization that serves immigrants or refugees. Learn a new language and start a conversation.
What makes an outstanding reporter?
Hard work, attention to detail, the ability to listen carefully, a scrupulous devotion to factuality, and relentless optimism regarding the economic future of the news industry.
Who are your journalism inspirations?
I don’t really have one or two journalists that I hold up as role models. There are hundreds of reporters who do work that inspires me: the Associated Press’ uncovering of NYPD surveillance of the Muslim community, Jill Lepore’s historical journalism for the New Yorker, and the now-defanged New Orleans Times-Picayune’s investigation of Louisiana’s bloated, cruel and broken prison system.
While on the ground, what is your most memorable anecdote?
Being fed: noodles, tacos al pastor, falafel. Visit a Sikh or Buddhist temple, eat lunch or drink milk tea. Meet a Mexican or Arab community leader—and meet them for lunch. Or dinner. More generally, working with Zoe Strauss has been a great joy. She’s an art photographer, I’m a journalist. While I’m interviewing someone, she’ll give them a hug and elicit all sorts of responses that I couldn’t have provoked. It’s like our “square cop, strange cop” routine.
What are your next projects?
I’ve been working a lot on the politics of education. My next project, however, is top-secret for the moment. It has to do with something that’s gone very wrong in the state of Pennsylvania.