PRIME TIME: The Life of Edward R. Murrow by Alexander Kendrick

PRIME TIME: The Life of Edward R. Murrow

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KIRKUS REVIEW

It could be said from the evidence supplied in this book that all his days were Edward R. Murrow's preparation for his triumphant clash with Senator Joseph McCarthy. Kendrick begins this biography with two chapters that detail Murrow's use of television to expose McCarthy's methods to a prime time audience and he therefore dissipates the climax right at the start. Chapter III begins a chronological, uncritical record of Murrow's life from boyhood forward, and surveys the radio reporting years, especially the broadcasts from London during the Blitz which set the Murrow style and influenced the radio audience acceptance (and expectancy) of other reporter-commentators. There's a good analysis of Murrow's personal philosophy and of his relationships with the radio and TV executives who controlled his access to the airways that were his media. Less personal, less emotional, more complete but nevertheless not as interesting a picture of the man as the one that emerges from Fred Friendly's Due to Circumstances Beyond Our Control (1967) this is an essential biography for any collection on the recent American past in the history of communications.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1969
Publisher: Little, Brown