"Whistleblowers" by Allison Stanger

Whistleblowers Honesty in America from Washington to Trump Allison Stanger

Format:
Paperback
Publication date:
23 Mar 2021
ISBN:
9780300258547
Imprint:
Yale University Press
Dimensions:
304 pages: 235 x 156mm

A magisterial exploration of whistleblowing in America, from the Revolutionary War to the Trump era

A "brisk and interesting" (Jill Lepore, New Yorker) exploration of whistleblowing in America, from the Revolutionary War to the Trump era


PROSE Award winner in the Government, Policy and Politics category
 
Misconduct by those in high places is always dangerous to reveal. Whistleblowers thus face conflicting impulses: by challenging and exposing transgressions by the powerful, they perform a vital public service—yet they always suffer for it. This episodic history brings to light how whistleblowing, an important but unrecognized cousin of civil disobedience, has held powerful elites accountable in America.
 
Analyzing a range of whistleblowing episodes, from the corrupt Revolutionary War commodore Esek Hopkins (whose dismissal led in 1778 to the first whistleblower protection law) to Edward Snowden, to the dishonesty of Donald Trump, Allison Stanger reveals the centrality of whistleblowing to the health of American democracy. She also shows that with changing technology and increasing militarization, the exposure of misconduct has grown more difficult to do and more personally costly for those who do it—yet American freedom, especially today, depends on it.

Allison Stanger is Russell Leng ’60 Professor of International Politics and Economics at Middlebury College, Cary and Ann Maguire Chair in Ethics and American History at the Library of Congress, a Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences Fellow at Stanford University, and an External Professor at the Santa Fe Institute. She is the author of One Nation Under Contract.