Summary: The Paper: The Life and Death of the New York Herald Tribune

The Paper: The Life And Death of the New York Herald Tribune by Richard Kluger"The Paper: The Life and Death of the New York Herald Tribune" by Richard Kluger is a comprehensive account of the rise and fall of the New York Herald Tribune, one of the most distinguished newspapers in American history.

The book begins with the founding of the Herald Tribune in 1924 and covers its early years, when it was known for its progressive editorial policies and its distinguished roster of writers and editors, including Dorothy Thompson, Walter Lippmann, and James Thurber.

Kluger traces the paper's evolution through the Great Depression, World War II, and the Cold War, detailing the paper's coverage of major events such as the Lindbergh kidnapping, the McCarthy hearings, and the Kennedy assassination. Throughout this time, the Herald Tribune maintained a reputation for high-quality journalism, and its reporters and columnists were among the most respected in the industry.

However, the book also chronicles the challenges that the Herald Tribune faced as the newspaper industry began to change in the 1960s and 1970s. Rising competition from television news and other media outlets, as well as declining readership and advertising revenue, led to financial difficulties for the paper.

Kluger also examines the internal struggles and power struggles that occurred within the Herald Tribune, as various factions vied for control of the paper and its editorial direction. In particular, he focuses on the rivalry between the paper's two most prominent editors, James Bellows and Clay Felker, and how their conflicting visions for the paper ultimately contributed to its demise.

Despite efforts to modernize and adapt to changing times, the Herald Tribune ultimately closed its doors in 1966, a victim of the changing media landscape and its own internal divisions. Kluger explores the aftermath of the paper's closure and its impact on the journalists and staff who worked there, as well as on the wider world of journalism and the city of New York.

Overall, "The Paper" is a meticulously researched and engagingly written account of the rise and fall of a major American newspaper, and a valuable resource for anyone interested in the history of journalism and media in the United States.


Return to the reading list.

Note: The above summary was generated by ChatGPT.