William Safire biography

Author Biography  | Books by this Author  | Readalikes

William Safire

William Safire

William Safire Biography

Born December 17, 1929, in New York City, William Safire was the youngest of three sons of Oliver C. and Ida (Panish) Safir. (Safire later changed the spelling of the family name while in the army to ensure correct pronunciation.) His father, a successful thread manufacturer, died when Safire was four, and he was raised by his mother in Los Angeles and New York.

After graduating from the Bronx High School of Science in New York, Safire attended Syracuse University for two years. He got a job as a copyboy the New York Herald Tribune. In 1952 he spent time as a correspondent in Europe and the Mid-East before entering the army. In 1954, Safire got a job with NBC, and he helped arrange the famous "kitchen debate" between Vice-President Richard Nixon and Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev in 1959.

Starting his own public relations firm in 1961, Mr. Safire worked in Gov. Nelson A. Rockefeller's 1964 presidential race and John V. Lindsay's 1965 campaign for mayor of New York. He volunteered as an unpaid speechwriter for Nixon and was assigned to help Patrick Buchanan with Nixon's syndicated newspaper column. In 1968 he wrote the victory speech following Nixon's election and in 1969, he joined the White House staff. As a presidential assistant he represented the moderate wing of the Republican Party and was responsible for major statements on the economy and Vietnam War.

In 1978 Safire won a Pulitzer prize for commentary. In addition to his twice-a-week political column, which appeared in over 300 papers, he was also known as a literary stylist, a pop grammarian, and the author of a weekly column, "On Language," which appeared in the New York Times Sunday Magazine section.

In 1968 he published The New Language of Politics, a dictionary of words and slogans in the political arena, and later he published several revisions. He has also written numerous other books on language, as well as several novels.

In 2006, Safire was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President George W. Bush. Safire died in 2009 at the age of 79.



This bio was last updated on 10/18/2013. We try to keep BookBrowse's biographies both up to date and accurate, but with many thousands of lives to keep track of it's a tough task. So, please help us - if the information about this author is out of date or inaccurate, and you know of a more complete source, please let us know. Authors and publishers: If you wish to make changes to a bio, send the complete biography as you would like it displayed so that we can replace the old with the new.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Books by this Author

Books by William Safire at BookBrowse
Scandalmonger jacket
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for William Safire but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose readalikes

  • Joseph J. Ellis

    Joseph J. Ellis

    Joseph J. Ellis is one of the nation's leading scholars of American history. The author of nine books, Ellis was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Founding Brothers: the Revolutionary Generation and won the National Book Award ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Scandalmonger

    Try:
    Founding Brothers
    by Joseph J. Ellis

  • Joe Eszterhas

    Joe Eszterhas

    Joe Eszterhas was born in Hungary, spent his first six years in Austrian refugee camps, and came to the United States in 1950. He lives in Point Dume, California, with his wife Naomi and their four children. He has two ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Scandalmonger

    Try:
    American Rhapsody
    by Joe Eszterhas

We recommend 5 similar authors

View all 5 Readalikes

Non-members can see 2 results. Become a member
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: The Latecomers
    The Latecomers
    by Helen Klein Ross
    The Latecomers is the third novel written by acclaimed author Helen Klein Ross, following What Was ...
  • Book Jacket: The Inflamed Mind
    The Inflamed Mind
    by Edward Bullmore
    It is common knowledge that depression diminishes the quality of sufferers' lives, but few people ...
  • Book Jacket: The Adults
    The Adults
    by Caroline Hulse
    Things have already fallen apart on the first page of The Adults. The novel opens with an emergency ...
  • Book Jacket: News of Our Loved Ones
    News of Our Loved Ones
    by Abigail DeWitt
    The Delasalle family of Abigail DeWitt's News of Our Loved Ones are no strangers to the dark specter...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
Force of Nature
by Jane Harper

As atmospheric, tense, and explosive as her New York Times bestselling debut, The Dry!

About the book
Join the discussion!

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    House of Stone
    by Novuyo Rosa Tshuma

    A masterful debut, pulsing with dark humor, that explores the often destructive act of history-making.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win Uncommon Type

Uncommon Type
by Tom Hanks

Surprising, intelligent, heartwarming, and a must-have for Tom Hanks fans!

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

Tell I T T M

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.