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Barbara W. Tuchman

Barbara W. Tuchman won two Pulitzer Prizes for her popular histories The Guns of August and Stilwell and the American Experience in China. Born to a history-making family, Tuchman accompanied her grandfather, the ambassador Henry Morgenthau, Sr., to the World Economic Conference in London in 1933. She volunteered as a researcher at the American Council of the Institute of Pacific Relations for two years and became foreign correspondent for her father’s paper, The Nation, travelling to Tokyo for a year and reporting on the Spanish Civil War from Madrid. Her first book, The Lost British Policy: Britain and Spain since 1700, was published in 1938. Her work for the Office of War Information during WWII further focused her attention on the history of war, and she wrote histories of the relationship between Britain and Israel, the American Revolution, and modern China. While some historians criticized her lack of a PhD, Tuchman also earned accolades for her readable, engaging style that made history accessible to a wider audience. In 1970, she became president of the Society of American Historians, and in 1979 became the first woman selected as the Jefferson Lecturer for the National Endowment for the Humanities.

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Translated into thirteen languages, the eminently readable, meticulously researched histories by Barbara Tuchman won two Pulitzer Prizes and a loyal audience that made them best-sellers.

Institution: American Jewish Historical Society

Date of Birth
January 30, 1912
Place of Birth
New York, New York
Date of Death
February 6, 1989

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Barbara W. Tuchman." (Viewed on July 24, 2014) <http://jwa.org/people/tuchman-barbara>.

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