NPR : News

Filed Under:

Richard Ben Cramer, Winner Of Pulitzer Prize And Masterful Reporter, Dies

Richard Ben Cramer, who won a Pulitzer Prize in 1979 for his reporting from the Middle East for the Philadelphia Inquirer and went on to write critically acclaimed books and magazine pieces, has died.

The Inquirer reports that Cramer, who was 62, "died Monday ... of lung cancer at the Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore."

The New York Times reminds us that after leaving the Inquirer in 1984, Cramer "went on to write for Sports Illustrated, Rolling Stone and Esquire, where in 1986, he wrote an article, 'What Do You Think of Ted Williams Now?,' about the iconic baseball player. The article, which seemed to strip Mr. Williams bare and reconstruct him anew in the eyes of his fans, became a hallmark of sports journalism."

His account of the 1988 presidential election — What It Takes: The Way to the White House — "has been hailed as one of the greatest books about electoral politics in America," the Inquirer adds.

Politico's Jonathan Martin calls What It Takes, a "masterpiece."

"The reporting, the writing, the depth, the breadth — who could ever match this standard?" Martin asks. "And, a bit more jealously, who could ever garner this access? Just as a previous generation of political reporters looked longingly upon Theodore White's behind-the-scenes stuff in The Making of the President, my own has gazed with envy upon how close up Cramer got to the candidates, the families, the consultants."

Copyright 2013 National Public Radio. To see more, visit


Rapid Learners: How Pixar Animators Created A Very Scary River

What would a small dinosaur look like in Class V rapids? That's the question Pixar filmmakers had to answer for their film The Good Dinosaur. So they piled into a raft to figure it out for themselves.
WAMU 88.5

Recipes Get A Makeover With GIFs, Science, And Emojis

On Food Wednesday, we explore the new ways recipes are being presented, with everything from GIFs to scientific method.

WAMU 88.5

International Military Action In Syria

French President Hollande meets with President Obama in Washington to seek additional U.S. support in the fight against ISIS in Syria, and NATO holds an emergency meeting over the downed Russian fighter jet: An update on international military strategy in Syria.


Used Rocket Is A New Breakthrough For Blue Origin's Space Plan

Blue Origin, the space company founded by Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos, has sent a craft past the edge of space and then landed its rocket safely – and vertically — in Texas.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.