College of Liberal Arts

History Alumnus Gaddis Wins Pulitzer

Wed, Apr 18, 2012

John Lewis Gaddis, a graduate of the Department of History at The University of Texas at Austin, has won the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Biography with his book “George F. Kennan: An American Life,” (Penguin Press, November 2011).

Known as the “Dean of Cold War Historians,” Gaddis received his Bachelor of Arts in 1963, his Master of Arts in 1965, and his doctorate in 1968, all from The University of Texas at Austin.

The author of numerous books, Gaddis is the Robert A. Lovett Professor of History at Yale University, where he teaches courses in Cold War history, grand strategy, international studies and biography.

Gaddis published the Kennan biography after nearly two decades of research. Pulitzer jurors called his work "an engaging portrait of a globetrotting diplomat whose complicated life was interwoven with the Cold War and America’s emergence as the world’s dominant power."

Gaddis' biography has also garnered the American History Book Prize — earning him $50,000 and the title of American Historian Laureate — and the National Book Critics Circle Award.

A native of Cotulla, Texas, Gaddis studied under Robert Divine, the George W. Littlefield Professor Emeritus in American History at The University of Texas at Austin.

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