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William Randolph Hearst: Media, Myth and Mystique
     

William Randolph Hearst: Media, Myth and Mystique

by Daniel Alef
 
William Randolph Hearst was a man of mythical proportions and staggering contradictions. And he was a fascinating character, so much so that he appears in various fictional works, from John Steinbeck's "Grapes of Wrath" and F. Scott Fitzgerald's "The Last Tycoon" to Orson Welles' "Citizen Kane," as if his life was not sufficiently bizarre in its own right. At its peak

Overview

William Randolph Hearst was a man of mythical proportions and staggering contradictions. And he was a fascinating character, so much so that he appears in various fictional works, from John Steinbeck's "Grapes of Wrath" and F. Scott Fitzgerald's "The Last Tycoon" to Orson Welles' "Citizen Kane," as if his life was not sufficiently bizarre in its own right. At its peak, Hearst's media empire included 28 leading newspapers from the San Francisco Examiner to the New York Journal, 18 magazines including Cosmopolitan and Harper's Bazaar, and eight radio stations, an enterprise worth more than $220 million and reaching more than 30 million people -- just a tad less than 25 percent of the American population! No wonder Hearst managed to get people such as Winston Churchill, even Benito Mussolini and Adolph Hitler, to pen articles for his papers. He lived a life of royalty from his 165-room La Cuesta Encantada in San Simeon on the Pacific Coast to St. Donat's castle in the Welsh countryside--guest George Bernard Shaw quipped, "This is what God would have built if he had had the money." Author Daniel Alef brings to life the remarkable story of a man who was at once a prodigy, a titan, a novelty and a contradiction. Includes a timeline, short bibliography and extensive internet video links about Hearst [3,233-word Titans of Fortune biographical profile]

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781608041596
Publisher:
Titans of Fortune Publishing
Publication date:
12/27/2010
Series:
Titans of Fortune
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Sales rank:
627,162
File size:
655 KB

Read an Excerpt

William Randolph Hearst was a man of mythical proportions and staggering contradictions. And he was a fascinating character, so much so that he appears in various fictional works, from John Steinbeck's "Grapes of Wrath" and F. Scott Fitzgerald's "The Last Tycoon" to Orson Welles' "Citizen Kane," as if his life was not sufficiently bizarre in its own right. Pascal must have had Hearst in mind when he said: "What a chimera then is man! What a novelty! What a monster, what a chaos, what a contradiction, what a prodigy!"
The only son of George Hearst, an illiterate, self-made millionaire who had a nose for ore and was a principal in the largest mining concern in the world-an enterprise with more than 95 mines including some in the Comstock Lode and other famous ones such as Ontario, Anaconda and Homestake--W. R. Hearst was born with a platinum spoon in his mouth. Time magazine said, "No publisher in history has had such an inexhaustible treasure to draw from."
His parents doted on their only child. Phoebe Hearst was well-educated and refined, his wealthy father politically well-connected, so W. R. gained all the advantages and encountered few of the hurdles most children face growing up.
He attended St. Paul's School in Concord, N.H., where he roomed with Will Tevis, California mogul Lloyd Tevis's son (Lloyd was one of George Hearst's two major partners, the other being James Ben Ali Haggin). Then it was off to Harvard, with an allowance of $150 a month, where Hearst's reputation as a prankster and disinterested student-not to mention poor grades-led to his premature departure from the university, but only after he gained some basic newspaper experience on the Harvard Lampoon. New York beckoned and Hearst went to work for Joseph Pulitzer's New York World.
George Hearst wanted his son to become involved in his mining operations but W. R. rejected the notion. He had other plans and was determined to become a publisher. In 1880 George had acquired the San Francisco Examiner, a Democratic Party rag that had fallen on hard times,

Meet the Author

Daniel Alef has written many articles, one law book, one historical anthology, Centennial Stories, and authored the award-winning historical novel, Pale Truth (MaxIt Publishing, 2000). Foreword Magazine named Pale Truth book of the year for general fiction in 2001 and the novel received many outstanding reviews including ones from Publishers Weekly and the American Library Association's Booklist. A sequel to Pale Truth, currently entitled Measured Swords, has just been completed. Titans of Fortune, biographical profiles of America's great moguls, men and women who had a profound impact on America and the World, began in April 2003. He is also a contributor to the recently released reference work: Gender and Women's Leadership pubished by Sage Publishing. Mr. Alef's experience as a lawyer, CEO of a public company, a rancher, and author, combined with his academic background-UCLA (B.S.), UCLA Law School (J.D.), the London School of Economics and Political Science (LL.M.), and Cambridge University (post-graduate studies)-gave him the perception to analyze the powerful titans and their achievements, and to place their lives and triumphs in a larger perspective. The Titans of Fortune series of articles appeared in several newspapers including the Lee Newspapers, Knight-Ridder, and became a weekly column in the Santa Barbara News Press. Mr. Alef also had a one-hour weekly radio show based on the Titans of Fortune column. He has appeared as a guest speaker and lecturer at various university, Rotary, and Kiwanis clubs, public libraries including San Francisco and Chicago, cruise ships, and at numerous historical societies across the nation. Mr. Alef serves on the Board of Trustees of the Santa Barbara Historical Museum and on the Santa Barbara Sheriff's Activities League. He is a black belt in judo and one of the head instructors of the University of California at Santa Barbara Judo Club. He currently lives with his family in Santa Barbara.

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