- Shopping Bag ( 0 items )
Unfazed by political or personal controversy, Schiff backed editorial writers like James Wechsler and Max Lerner and reporters like Murray Kempton and Pete Hamill. Under her guidance the Post broke the story of Richard Nixon's slush fund. It helped bring down such icons of the day as Joseph McCarthy, Walter Winchell, and Robert Moses. It supported the civil rights movement and opposed the Vietnam War. Although Dolly seldom appeared in the newsroom, she approved and commented on every major story and every minor column in the paper, until eventually selling it to Rupert Murdoch.
—Victor Navasky, publisher emeritus, The Nation
All these eccentric tidbits are included in The Lady Upstairs, a scrupulously researched book that fairly spills with archival material and personal testimony.
—The New York Times
In this first book, Nissenson, a producer of TV documentaries, coaxes out the contradictions of pioneering newspaper woman Dolly Schiff, who owned and published the New York Postfrom 1939 to 1976, when she sold to Rupert Murdoch. Peppering her historical research with incisive family testimony, personal notes, professional epistles and combative newspaper editorials, the author paints Schiff as profoundly human in her distinctive paradoxes. Her liberal politics evinced a strong connection to the plight of common folk, though she remained cold and aloof to her newspaper underlings. She was a visionary socialite who poured millions of her own inheritance into the tabloid, while serving powerful politicians meager tuna-fish sandwiches and steaming off unused postage stamps to be recycled. She championed women's rights, but never considered herself a feminist. Contradictions aside, her shrewd management and endless personal financial commitment transformed the Postinto a profit-generating enterprise as well as a bastion of New Deal liberalism. A consummate flirt, she devoured and discarded husbands at an alarming rate, and Nissenson brings new light to the legend of Schiff's extramarital affair with FDR with suggestive details but no definitive answers. At times this biography reads like a perfunctory tour guide through the touchstones of 20th-century American history, but Schiff's character brims with spunk and surprise along the way. (Apr. 5)Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Excerpted from The Lady Upstairs by Nissenson, Marilyn Copyright © 2007 by Nissenson, Marilyn. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.