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Carl Bernstein

Bernstein at the 2007 Texas Book Festival
Born 14 February 1944 (1944-02-14) (age 66)
Washington, D.C., USA
Education University of Maryland (did not graduate)
Occupation Journalist, Writer
Employer Vanity Fair
Known for Reporting on Watergate scandal
Religion Judaism
Children Jacob Bernstein, Max Bernstein
Parents Alfred Bernstein and Sylvia Walker

Carl Bernstein (pronounced /ˈbɜrnstiːn/ BURN-steen) (born February 14, 1944) is an American journalist who, as a reporter for The Washington Post along with Bob Woodward, broke the story of the Watergate break-in and consequently helped bring about the resignation of United States President Richard Nixon. For his role in breaking the scandal, Bernstein received many awards; his work helped earn the Post a Pulitzer Prize for Public Service in 1973.

In a 1977 Rolling Stone article, Bernstein revealed that over 400 US journalists had been employed by the CIA, secretly carrying out assignments and publishing news stories for them.[1]

Contents

Personal

In his 1989 memoir Loyalties, Bernstein revealed that his parents had been members of the Communist Party, which shocked some because even J. Edgar Hoover had tried and been unable to prove that Bernstein's parents were party members.[2] Bernstein's parents were allegedly persecuted during the 1950s. The FBI conducted surveillance on his family over a 30 year period producing over 2,500 pages of documents, including notes taken by agents staking out his bar mitzvah.[3]

Bernstein graduated from Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring, Maryland. He subsequently attended the University of Maryland, College Park. Bernstein, who is Jewish, is a lifetime member of B'nai B'rith and once was President of B'nai B'rith's Northern Region.

Bernstein met Margaret Jay, daughter of British Prime Minister James Callaghan and wife of Peter Jay, then UK ambassador to the United States; Bernstein had a much-publicised extramarital relationship in 1979 with Margaret, who later became a government minister in her own right.[4] Bernstein and his second wife, screenwriter Nora Ephron, had an infant son, Jacob, and Ephron was pregnant with their second son, Max, in 1980 when she found out the news of Bernstein's affair with Jay. Ephron delivered Max prematurely after finding out.[5] Writer Ephron was inspired by the events to write the 1983 novel Heartburn,[4] which was made into a 1986 film starring Jack Nicholson and Meryl Streep. In the thinly fictionalized book, Ephron gave unflattering depictions of both Jay and Bernstein, writing of a husband who was “capable of having sex with a venetian blind"[5] and saying that Jay looked like a giraffe with "big feet."[5]

Bernstein then became known for dating Bianca Jagger, Martha Stewart and Elizabeth Taylor; he was also arrested for drunk driving.[2]

He currently resides in New York with his wife Christine.

Career

Bernstein played an integral role in his partnership with Bob Woodward during the Watergate scandal. Bernstein was the first to suspect that Nixon played a part, and Bernstein found the laundered check that linked Nixon to the burglary.[2]

Bernstein quit The Washington Post in 1976. Post-Watergate, he did not realize the same level of success that Woodward did; his frequent appearances in gossip columns resulting from the book and movie Ephron released, his arrest, and his dating of Hollywood celebrities did not serve to burnish his journalistic reputation.[2] Notably, Washington Post owner Katharine Graham did not invite him to the newspaper's 70th birthday gala, which was widely regarded as a snub given Bernstein's contributions toward bringing the Post to international stature.[2]

Subsequent to leaving the Post, he worked as the Washington Bureau Chief and as a senior correspondent for ABC News, taught at New York University, and contributed to Time. Bernstein authored two books with Woodward: All the President's Men, which details the successes and failures of their journalistic efforts against the backdrop of the unfolding scandal, and The Final Days, a recounting of the concluding months of the Nixon presidency, although Woodward questioned Bernstein's contributions to the latter book and reportedly did not want to list Bernstein as a co-author.[2] Woodward said, "It was not the most productive time for Carl."[2] Woodward reportedly turned down offers to again work with Bernstein on an investigative column or any further books.[2]

He co-authored the book His Holiness: John Paul II & the History of Our Time with Marco Politi. Following the May 2005 revelation of the identity of Deep Throat, Bernstein contributed to Woodward's book The Secret Man, which pertains to Woodward's relationship with Mark Felt.

Bernstein wrote a memoir, a "pained, loving, intensely felt account of his parents' ordeal, and his own emotional upheaval, during President Harry Truman's loyalty purges."[6] He has also written a biography of Hillary Rodham Clinton, A Woman In Charge: The Life of Hillary Rodham Clinton, published by Alfred A. Knopf on June 5, 2007.

Portrayals

Books authored

  • All the President's Men - With Bob Woodward (1974) ISBN 0-671-21781-X,
  • The Final Days - With Bob Woodward (1976) ISBN 0-671-22298-8
  • Loyalties: A Son's Memoir - (1989)
  • His Holiness: John Paul II & the History of Our Time - With Marco Politi (1996)
  • The Secret Man - With Bob Woodward (2005) ISBN 0-7432-8715-0
  • A Woman in Charge: The Life of Hillary Rodham Clinton - (2007) ISBN 0-375-40766-9

References

External links

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Quotes

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Carl Bernstein (born February 14, 1944) is an American journalist who, as a reporter for The Washington Post along with Bob Woodward, broke the story of the Watergate break-in and consequently helped bring about the resignation of US president Richard Nixon. For his role in breaking the scandal, Bernstein received many awards; his work helped earn the Post a Pulitzer Prize for Public Service in 1973.

Sourced

  • The reality is that the media are probably the most powerful of all our institutions today and they, or rather we [journalists], too often are squandering our power and ignoring our obligations. The consequence of our abdication of responsibility is the ugly spectacle of idiot culture!

An A-Z of cultural terms, The Guardian (1992)

"An A-Z of cultural terms", The Guardian, 1992-06-03. URL accessed on 2007-03-27.

  • The failures of the press have contributed immensely to the emergence of a talk-show nation, in which public discourse is reduced to ranting and raving and posturing. We now have a mainstream press whose news agenda is increasingly influenced by this netherworld.
  • The greatest felony in the news business today is to be behind, or to miss a big story. So speed and quantity substitute for thoroughness and quality, for accuracy and context. The pressure to compete, the fear somebody else will make the splash first, creates a frenzied environment in which a blizzard of information is presented and serious questions may not be raised.
  • The lowest form of popular culture—lack of information, misinformation, disinformation, and a contempt for the truth or the reality of most people’s lives—has overrun real journalism. Today, ordinary Americans are being stuffed with garbage.
  • We are in the process of creating what deserves to be called the idiot culture. Not an idiot sub-culture, which every society has bubbling beneath the surface and which can provide harmless fun; but the culture itself. For the first time, the weird and the stupid and the coarse are becoming our cultural norm, even our cultural ideal.

External links

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