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Fighting Words

Fighting Words

The Bold American Journalists Who Brought the World Home Between the Wars

From a Harvard historian, this riveting portrait of four trailblazing American journalists highlights the power of the press in the interwar period.

In the fragile peace following the Great War, a surprising number of restless young Americans abandoned their homes and set out impulsively to see the changing world. In Fighting Words, Nancy F. Cott follows four who pursued global news — from contested Palestine to revolutionary China, from Stalin’s Moscow to Hitler’s Berlin. As foreign correspondents, they became players in international politics and shaped Americans’ awareness of critical interwar crises, the spreading menace of European fascism, and the likelihood of a new war — while living romantic and sexual lives as modern and as hazardous as their journalism.

An indelible portrayal of a tumultuous era with resonance for our own, Fighting Words is essential reading on the power of the press and the growth of an American sense of international responsibility.
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Genre: Nonfiction / History / United States / 20th Century

On Sale: March 17th 2020

Price: $18.99 / $23.99 (CAD)

Page Count: 416

ISBN-13: 9781541699311

What's Inside

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Reader Reviews


"What induced a generation of brilliant young writers to report to the United States from the farthest reaches of a war-torn world? In Fighting Words, the peerless historian Nancy F. Cott recovers the sense of adventure, and, equally, of responsibility, that drove some of the most talented journalists of their generation to cover the rise of authoritarianism. In between the wars, an era uncannily like our own, they explained the world to Americans, and Americans to the world."—Jill Lepore, author of These Truths: A History of the United States
"The golden age of American foreign correspondence was the years between the World Wars. Reporters had freedom to see and report (Americans were liked overseas then); many acquired years of experience doing so. Nancy Cott gives us vivid portraits of four of the best. Their stories are a reminder why we need independent eyes and ears abroad."—John Maxwell Hamilton, professor at Louisiana State University, and Global Fellow, Woodrow Wilson Center for Journalists
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