Wednesday, February 24th


Samuel G. Freedman: “The AIDS Reporting of Jeff Schmalz and How It Transformed The NY Times”

“Dying Words: The AIDS Reporting of Jeff Schmalz and How It Transformed The New York Times,” was released on December 1, 2015, to coincide with World AIDS Day. The multimedia project is an audio documentary with a companion book about the groundbreaking journalist who covered the AIDS epidemic as he was dying of the disease.

Schmalz’s work is credited with changing The New York Times’ coverage of gay issues. The New York Times of today – publishing same-sex wedding announcements, editorializing in favor of marriage equality and covering LGBT issues in more and more depth – is the fruition of changes that Jeff helped set into motion. Now, 22 years after he died at age 39, his contributions have been largely forgotten. 

“Dying Words” is based on original interviews with Anna Quindlen, Arthur Sulzberger, Jr. and Adam Moss, among other leading journalists, and it draws on Jeff’s own interviews with such figures as Bill Clinton, Magic Johnson, Mary Fisher, Larry Kramer, and Randy Shilts.

This book—and the companion audio documentary co-produced by Kerry Donahue and hosted by Rachel Maddow, available through PRX—preserve Jeff Schmalz’s legacy and confirm his profound effect on American journalism.

Samuel G. Freedman is an award-winning author, columnist, and professor. A columnist for The New York Times and a professor at Columbia University, and he is the author of seven acclaimed books. He has been a finalist for the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize, and has won the Helen Bernstein Award for Excellence in Journalism and the National Jewish Book Award.

Moderated by lecturer David Tuller of UC Berkeley’s joint master’s program in public health and journalism.

For more information go to: http://dyingwordsproject.com/

The book is available to order here: http://press.journalism.cuny.edu/views and will be sold at the event.

This event is part of a series of events sponsored by Kaiser Permanente co-sponsored by the School of Public Health at UC Berkeley. 

*** RSVP to the event here ***

Cost: Free, but tax-deductible donations to our depleted events fund are greatly appreciated. 


Columbia Journalism Review: The man who transformed how The New York Times covers the gay community 

On The Media: Dying Words


Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism


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