Benedict Giamo

Benedict Giamo

Associate Professor
Ph.D., Emory University
B.A., Baldwin-Wallace College

1039 Flanner Hall
University of Notre Dame
Notre Dame, IN 46556
Phone: (574) 631-7142
Fax: (574) 631-4399


Benedict Giamo is the author of On the Bowery, Beyond Homelessness, The Homeless of Ironweed, and Kerouac, the Word and the Way.  His most recent book–Homeless Come Home: An Advocate, the Riverbank, and Murder in Topeka, Kansas–is a nonfiction account that blends investigative journalism, social analysis, and true crime.  The book chronicles the kidnapping and murder of an advocate for the homeless, including the trials of three homeless co-defendants charged with the crimes.  Giamo teaches courses in the areas of poverty and homelessness, literary and cultural studies, fieldwork, and social dissent.


  • AMST 30112: Witnessing the Sixties 

  • AMST 30113: Fieldwork and American Documentary 

  • AMST 30110: Confronting Homelessness in the United States 

  • AMST 30148: A Tale of Two Depressions 

  • AMST 43123: Postwar American Dissent 


Recent Articles and Essays

  • "Bob Dylan's Protean Style," in Refractions of Bob Dylan: Cultural Appropriations of an American Icon. Eugene Banauch, editor, Manchester University Press, 2015.

  • “Jack of Jacks: Alternative History” [Kerouac & American Football], Sport Literate, Vol. 7, Issue 1 ( 2011)

  • “The Means of Representation: Kenneth Burke and American Marxism,” Kenneth Burke Journal, Vol. 5, No. 2 (2009)

  • “Played Out,” a personal essay on football, Sport Literate, Vol. 6, No. 1 (2008)

  • “An American Original: Kenneth Burke,” Harvard Review 27 (2004)

  •  “The Myth of the Vanquished: The Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum,” American Quarterly 55 (2003)



"Homeless Come Home: An Advocate, the Riverbank, and Murder in Topeka, Kansas . . . is part Owen biography, crime drama and assessment of homelessness in Topeka and beyond. ‘What really compelled me about this case,’ Giamo said, ‘was the victim contributed to his own gruesome demise.’" — The Topeka Capital-Journal


“Benedict Giamo has long had an interest in the plight of the homeless. . . . Giamo has written several books on the topic, including On the Bowery: Confronting Homelessness in American Society . . . . In the true crime book Homeless Come Home, Giamo recounts the tragic end that came to David Owen. Owen was a Kansas-based homeless advocate whose efforts to force homeless people to reconnect with their families led to his 2006 murder.” — South Bend Tribune