Adam Hochschild (pronunciation: ”Hoch” as in ”spoke”; ”schild” as in ”build”) is the author of eleven books. American Midnight: The Great War, a Violent Peace, and Democracy’s Forgotten Crisis is his most recent. His preceding book, the biography Rebel Cinderella: From Rags to Riches to Radical, the Epic Journey of Rose Pastor Stokes, was published in 2020. Spain in Our Hearts: Americans in the Spanish Civil War, 1936-1939, appeared in 2016. Of his earlier books, Bury the Chains: Prophets and Rebels in the Fight to Free an Empire’s Slaves won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, the PEN USA Literary Award, and was a finalist for the National Book Award. King Leopold’s Ghost: A Story of Greed, Terror and Heroism in Colonial Africa and To End All Wars: A Story of Loyalty and Rebellion, 1914-1918 were both finalists for the National Book Critics Circle Award. His Finding the Trapdoor: Essays, Portraits, Travels and the recent Lessons from a Dark Time and Other Essays collect his shorter pieces, including magazine reporting from five continents.
Earlier in his career, he was a reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle, a commentator on National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered,” and a co-founder, editor, and writer at Mother Jones magazine. He has received the Theodore Roosevelt-Woodrow Wilson Award from the American Historical Association and in 2014 was elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is a three-time winner of the California Book Awards’ Gold Medal for Nonfiction.
The New York Times Book Review has featured Hochschild as the subject of its weekly “By the Book” interview. At the Graduate School of Journalism, former PBS NewsHour correspondent Elizabeth Farnsworth talked with Hochschild about his work (interview starts at 6:00 minutes into the video recording), and in Bunia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Scott Pelley of “60 Minutes” spoke with him about his writing about that country. Terry Gross of NPR’s “Fresh Air” has done interviews with Hochschild about American Midnight, about Spain in Our Hearts and about To End All Wars. The late Studs Terkel’s audio archive contains his interview with Hochschild about Half the Way Home.
In 2012, Hochschild was honored for the body of his work by the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Here are excerpts from a statement he made on that occasion.
Audio/Visual Presentations of selected books by Adam Hochschild:
Selected recent articles by Adam Hochschild:
History Wars–The Latest Round (New York Review of Books)
The Cult of J. Edgar Hoover (The Nation)
‘They Have No Objection to Being Killed’ (New York Review of Books)
In the Ukraine War, Russia’s History Casts a Long Shadow (The Atlantic)
Are the Proud Boys about Race–or Women? (New York Times Book Review)
Gone With the Wind: Frankly, Should We Give a Damn? (New Statesman)
Who’s to Blame? (New York Review of Books)
The 1619 Project (New York Times Book Review)
Midnight in the Statue Storage Vault (San Francisco Chronicle)
Teaching Restorative Justice, One Hallway Fight at a Time (Mother Jones)
When Museums Have Ugly Pasts (The Atlantic)
Visiting Finland’s Prisons–and Ours (New York Review of Books)
A Nation of Guns (New York Review of Books)
Rape of the Congo (New York Review of Books)
Blood and Treasure in Eastern Congo (Mother Jones)
Tarzan and Me (Tomdispatch.com)
(Photo of Adam Hochschild by Barbi Reed)
PUBLICATIONS & OTHER WORK
Spain in Our Hearts: Americans in the Spanish Civil War, 1936-1939
"With all due respect to Orwell, 'Spain in Our Hearts' should supplant 'Homage to Catalonia' as the best introduction to the conflict written in English." --New Republic.
King Leopold's Ghost: A Story of Greed, Terror and Heroism in Colonial Africa
"Hochschild's book is a rare thing in possessing both scholarly worth and the virtues of a novel. This is an extraordinary book." --Boston Sunday Globe.
Half the Way Home: A Memoir of Father and Son
"An extraordinarily moving portrait of the complexities and confusions of familial love." --Michiko Kakutani, New York Times.
The Unquiet Ghost: Russians Remember Stalin
"The characters and the dramatic situations Mr. Hochschild encounters are nothing short of magnificent." --New York Times Book Review.
Finding the Trapdoor: Essays, Portraits, Travels
"An enthralling excursion around the world and into the heart." --Publishers Weekly.
Bury the Chains: Prophets and Rebels in the Fight to Free an Empire's Slaves
"A thrilling, substantive . . . work of narrative history. In its own fashion, it furthers the abolitionists' crucial work of lifting our moral blindness." --Maureen Corrigan, NPR's 'Fresh Air.'
To End All Wars: A Story of Loyalty and Rebellion, 1914-1918
"This is a book to make one feel deeply and painfully"--Christopher Hitchens, New York Times Book Review.
The Mirror at Midnight: A South African Journey
"Through the prism of a strangely special relationship with South Africa, his is far more than an outsider's perception of the drama of our country"--Nadine Gordimer.
Lessons from a Dark Time and Other Essays
“This is advocacy journalism of the most persuasive kind—impassioned but never shrill. . . . He bears witness, through his own eyes and ears and the voices of the afflicted, brave people he meets.”--San Francisco Chronicle.
Rebel Cinderella: From Rags to Riches to Radical, the Epic Journey of Rose Pastor Stokes
“Hochschild is as excellent at invoking . . . personal confrontations as he is at summarizing, with epigrammatic clarity, complex historical developments.”
--Wall Street Journal.
American Midnight: The Great War, a Violent Peace, and Democracy's Forgotten Crisis
“masterly. . . . Hochschild’s sharp portraits and vignettes make for poignant reading.”
--New York Times Book Review
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