We’d heard Derek Black, the former white-power heir apparent, interviewed before about his past, but never about the college friendships that changed him. After Derek’s ideology was outed at the New College of Florida, Matthew Stevenson (one of the only Orthodox Jews on campus) invited him to Shabbat dinner. What happened next is a roadmap for navigating some of the hardest and most important territory of our time.
Matthew Stevenson was born and raised in South Florida. He graduated from the New College of Florida, the state's honors college, with degrees in mathematics and economics. He holds an MBA from Columbia Business School and currently works as an investment analyst at T. Rowe Price.
Derek Black is a PhD student in history at the University of Chicago, where he’s examining how the legacy of the medieval European worldview influenced the development of ideas about race in the early-modern Atlantic. He is the subject of the recent book Rising Out of Hatred by Eli Saslow.
This interview is edited and produced with music and other features in the On Being episode "Derek Black and Matthew Stevenson — Befriending Radical Disagreement." Find more at onbeing.org.