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James Tobin

James Tobin, associate professor of journalism, has been granted tenure. Tobin is a specialist in the areas of literary journalism and narrative history. After a semester as the Weipking Visiting Professor, he joined the Miami faculty in fall 2006. He is currently at work on a book about Franklin Roosevelt’s experience of disability, for which he was granted a National Endowment for the Humanities fellowship in 2008. Tobin’s first book, Ernie Pyle’s War: America’s Eyewitness to World War II (Free Press, 1997), won the 1998 National Book Critics Circle Award in biography. In 2003, Tobin edited and provided commentary for Reporting America at War: An Oral History (Hyperion), the companion volume to a two-part PBS television documentary on war correspondents in the 20th century.

Tobin’s most recent book is To Conquer the Air: The Wright Brothers and the Great Race for Flight (Free Press, 2003), which Publisher’s Weekly called a “detailed yet truly exciting tale…extraordinarily well-written and deeply nuanced…stunningly effective in presenting the intertwining lives of the brothers and an amazing cast of friends and competitors….” Tobin is also the author of Great Projects: The Epic Story of the Building of America from the Taming of the Mississippi to the Invention of the Internet (Free Press, 2001), a companion book to a four-part PBS documentary series by the filmmaker Stephen Ives.

After earning bachelor’s and doctoral degrees in history at the University of Michigan, Tobin was a reporter at The Detroit News for 12 years, where his work was twice nominated for the Pulitzer Prize.

Date Published: 02/19/2009
Volume: 27   Number: 22

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