Frances FitzGerald

Biography of Frances FitzGerald

Frances FitzGerald (born October 21, 1940) is an American journalist and author. She is primarily known for her acclaimed journalistic account of the Vietnam War.


FitzGerald's parents were New York lawyer Desmond FitzGerald and socialite Marietta Peabody. As a teenager, she wrote voluminous letters to Governor Adlai Stevenson expressing her opinion on many subjects, a reflection of her deep interest in world affairs. FitzGerald is married to James P. Sterba, a former writer for The Wall Street Journal. The couple live in New York City and Maine, which Sterba featured in his 2003 book Frankie's Place: A Love Story.


FitzGerald is best known for her book, Fire in the Lake: The Vietnamese and the Americans in Vietnam (1972), which was met with great acclaim when it was published and remains one of the most notable books about the Vietnam War. For it she won both a Pulitzer Prize and the U.S. National Book Award in Contemporary Affairs.

FitzGerald's subsequent volumes include America Revised, a highly critical review of history textbooks (1979); Cities on a Hill (1987); Way Out There in the Blue: Reagan, Star Wars and the End of the Cold War (2000), a Pulitzer finalist; "Rewriting American history", a short article in The Norton Reader; and Vietnam: Spirits of the Earth (2002).

FitzGerald's writing has also appeared in The New Yorker, and the New York Review of Books, The New York Times Magazine, Esquire, Architectural Digest, and Rolling Stone. She serves on the editorial boards of The Nation and Foreign Policy, and is vice-president of International PEN. Updates

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