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Author Archive

Articles by James Boylan | Email the Author

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books on newspaper publishers

The Magnificent Medills: The McCormick-Patterson Dynasty: America’s Royal Family of Journalism During a Century of Turbulent Splendor By Megan McKinney... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books on journalists William L. Shirer and E.J. Edwards, plus the documentary Page One

The Long Night: William L. Shirer and The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich by Steve Wick | Palgrave... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of new books about war correspondents Roi Ottley and Byron Darnton

Roi Ottley’s World War II: The Lost Diary of an African American Journalist | Edited with an introduction by Mark... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of a new history of NPR, Denys Wortman’s cartoons, and Laurie Hertzel’s memoir

This Is NPR: The First Forty Years by Cokie Roberts and others | Chronicle Books | 271 pages, $29.95 This... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books on Garry Wills and the decline of The New York Times

Outside Looking In: Adventures of an Observer | By Garry Wills | Viking | 195 pages, $25.95 This is a... More

Al Balk, 1969—1973

CJR’s second editor

Alfred Balk, the second editor of the Columbia Journalism Review, died in November at the age of eighty. Al, like... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books about copyright law, political scandals, and Gay Talese’s sports writing

Common as Air: Revolution, Art, and Ownership | By Lewis Hyde | Farrar, Straus and Giroux | 306 pages, $26... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of a history of wartime public opinion and a biography of Time publisher Henry Luce

Selling War in a Media Age: The Presidency and Public Opinion in the American Century | Edited by Kenneth Osgood... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of a classic novel about journalism and a biography of a pioneering female reporter

A Modern Instance | By William Dean Howells | J. R. Osgood and Company | 514 pages, available online for free... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books about misreported stories, the Killing Fields, and the press vs. secrets

Getting It Wrong: Ten of the Greatest Misreported Stories in American Journalism | By W. Joseph Campbell | University of... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books about the future of journalism and a career at the Times

The Death and Life of American Journalism: The Media Revolution That Will Begin the World Again By Robert W. McChesney... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books about familial discoveries and coverage of Hillary Clinton

Enemies of the People: My Family’s Journey to America By Kati Marton Simon & Schuster 272 pages, $26 For Kati... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books on foreign reporting and journalists who risked it all

Journalism’s Roving Eye: A History of American Foreign Reporting By John Maxwell Hamilton Louisiana State University Press 655 pages, $45... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books on the Irish Revolution and animal rights crusaders

The News From Ireland: Foreign Correspondents and The Irish Revolution By Maurice Walsh I.B. Tauris 258 pages, £20 At the... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books on campaign bloggers, tabloids, and a collection of Henry Fairlie’s essays

Bloggers on the Bus: How the Internet Changed Politics and the Press By Eric Boehlert Free Press 280 pages, $26... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books about William Randolph Hearst and the Arkansas Gazette

The Uncrowned King: The Sensational Rise of William Randolph Hearst | By Kenneth Whyte | Counterpoint | 546 pages, $30... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books about Fred Friendly and America’s early newspapermen

Friendlyvision: Fred Friendly and the Rise and Fall of Television Journalism | By Ralph Engelman, Foreword by Morley Safer |... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books about art on the New York Times’s Op-Ed page, the short life of The Chicagoan, and hoaxes in the news.

All the Art That’s Fit to Print (And Some That Wasn’t): Inside The New York Times Op-Ed Page By Jerelle... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books about public confession and John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath.

The Art of the Public Grovel: Sexual Sin and Public Confession in America By Susan Wise Bauer Princeton University Press... More

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books about Masson v. New Yorker and immersion journalism at Harper’s magazine.

Literary Journalism on Trial: Masson v. New Yorker and The First Amendment
 By Kathy Roberts Forde
 University of Massachusetts Press... More

Hey millionaire tech bros: Have patience with the editorial process - Chris Hughes probably wanted to enable great journalism at first. Then the dust settled and before you know it, he’s shaking everything up again

Serial creators don’t know what will happen to Adnan Syed - New developments in his legal case suggest that the outcome is wide open

Price hike at UC Berkeley’s journalism school - Governing body approves additional fee of $7,500 starting 2016

Will Denver really have a newspaper war? - As a billionaire floats reviving the Rocky Mountain News, The Denver Post might buckle its chin strap

FOIA reform dies while the press looked the other way - RIP Improvement Act of 2014


The traffic lure of outrage (Slate)

“I didn’t become a journalist to peddle indignation on Facebook. But it sells—the page views don’t lie.”

NBC news producer’s sons were in the besieged school in Peshawar (NBCnews.com)

“I remained silent and didn’t know what to say — I know how such attacks on schools usually end”

Hero mom calls into CSPAN to berate her arguing pundit sons (WaPo)

“This was not planned. She called in on the normal line.”

Dick Cheney doesn’t want to call it torture but the media doesn’t have to follow (Vox)

“People deserve to know that the American government (proudly!) did things that in any other context are called torture”

Bloggingheads

Greg Marx discusses democracy and news with Tom Rosenstiel of the American Press Institute

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Who Owns What

The Business of Digital Journalism

A report from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism

Study Guides

Questions and exercises for journalism students.