Benedict J. Fernandez, Photojournalist

on view now

Hoboken Historical Museum, 1301 Hudson, Hoboken

Benedict J. Fernandez was born in Manhattan on April 5, 1936. His father migrated from Puerto Rico and his mother Palma was of Italian heritage. Benedict was raised in East Harlem. As a child, he struggled with reading. Benedict later learned that he had undiagnosed dyslexia. Receiving a Brownie camera as a gift enabled Benedict to find his creative voice, and changed the trajectory of his life.

Throughout his childhood and young adulthood, Benedict’s circle of friends was very diverse, including young men who were African-American, Jewish, and Muslim. He learned to listen to and empathize with their experiences of discrimination. His friends inspired him to find his own way to challenge social prejudices later through his photography.

 

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