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Recommended Reading - Maverick: A Biography of Thomas Sowell


A biography of Thomas Sowell, one of America's most influential conservative thinkers. Thomas Sowell is one of the great social theorists of our age. In a career spanning more than a half century, he has written over thirty books, covering topics from economic history and social inequality to political theory, race, and culture. His bold and unsentimental assaults on liberal orthodoxy have endeared him to many readers but have also enraged fellow intellectuals, the civil-rights establishment, and much of the mainstream media. The result has been a lack of acknowledgment of his scholarship among critics who prioritize political correctness. In the first-ever biography of Sowell, Jason L. Riley gives this iconic thinker his due and responds to the detractors. Maverick showcases Sowell's most significant writings and traces the life events that shaped his ideas and resulted in a Black orphan from the Jim Crow South becoming one of our foremost public intellectuals.


About the Author

Jason Riley is an opinion columnist at The Wall Street Journal, where his column, Upward Mobility, has run since 2016. He is also a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute and provides television commentary for various news outlets.

Mr. Riley, a 2018 Bradley Prize recipient, is the author of four books: “Let Them In: The Case for Open Borders” (2008); “Please Stop Helping Us: How Liberals Make It Harder for Blacks to Succeed” (2014); “False Black Power?” (2017); and “Maverick: A Biography of Thomas Sowell” (2021).

Mr. Riley joined the paper in 1994 as a copy reader on the national news desk in New York. He moved to the editorial page in 1995, was named a senior editorial page writer in 2000, and became a member of the Editorial Board in 2005. He joined the Manhattan Institute in 2015.

Born in Buffalo, New York, Mr. Riley earned a bachelor's degree in English from the State University of New York at Buffalo.

He has also worked for USA Today and the Buffalo News.


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