Bernstein, Mark 1950-

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BERNSTEIN, Mark 1950-

PERSONAL:

Born January 30, 1950.

ADDRESSES:

Home—830 Xenia Ave., Yellow Springs, OH 45387.

CAREER:

Writer of history and biography.

WRITINGS:

Paper with Presence: A Gilbert Century, Gilbert Paper (Menasha, WI), 1987.

Miami Valley Hospital: A Centennial History, Miami Valley Hospital Society (Dayton, OH), 1990.

Grand Eccentrics: Turning the Century: Dayton and the Inventing of America, Orange Frazer Press (Wilmington, OH), 1996.

New Bremen, Orange Frazer Press (Wilmington, OH), 1999.

New Bremen 2000, Orange Frazer Press (Wilmington, OH), 2000.

(With Alex Lubertozzi) World War II on the Air, Sourcebooks MediaFusion (Naperville, IL), 2003.

Work has appeared in the Smithsonian, American Heritage of Invention & Technology, and Ohio magazine.

SIDELIGHTS:

Mark Bernstein is a contemporary historian whose works have explored important developments in American history and their effects on popular culture and technology. From a paper company to a small Midwestern town to turn-of-the-twentieth-century inventors to radio coverage during World War II, Bernstein has often focused on small but key events and places in an effort to explore American life and consciousness.

In his first two books, Bernstein researches the history of two Midwestern organizations, Miami Valley Hospital in Ohio and Gilbert Paper in Wisconsin. His next book, Grand Eccentrics: Turning the Century: Dayton and the Inventing of America, focuses on six key inventers and entrepreneurs in the Midwest and their role in the technological developments of the last century. Outlining Dayton, Ohio's role in creating the American twentieth century, Bernstein catalogues the achievements of Orville and Wilbur Wright, Charles Kettering, John H. Patterson, Arthur Morgan, and James Cox. New Bremen, his next history paints a picture of a small city through interviews with its residents. His research for the book was later combined with Bob Flischel's photography of the town to create New Bremen 2000.

Bernstein's work gained the attention of national critics with the publication of World War II on the Air, an account of the development of war journalism that was coauthored with Alex Lubertozzi. It chronicles the work of the journalistic team assembled by Edward R. Murrow—known as "Murrow's boys"—that covered World War II by radio for the American public. Bernstein and Lubertozzi show the difficulty and importance of the coverage, which has greatly influenced foreign journalism up to the present. The book is accompanied by a compact disc, narrated by CBS anchorman Dan Rather, that provides readers with samples of Murrow's team's correspondence. Richard McCann of the Decatur Daily remarked of the book that it is "well done, but not an in-depth history of the war nor of war correspondence. The focus is on Murrow's CBS radio team and the narrative covers highlights of the conflict they reported and the politics that preceded it." Several critics appreciated the popular aspect of Bernstein and Lubertozzi's history, and many praised the inclusion of the radio news correspondence with the book. The Columbia Journalism Review's James Boylan remarked on the interest added by the compact disc, though he observed that ultimately "the CD is more gripping than the text." Writing in Booklist, however, Roland Green acknowledged Bernstein for his "solid contribution to media history," and Mark Ellis, a critic for Library Journal, felt World War II on the Air gives "a thrilling sense of what it was like for Americans following the war at home in their living rooms."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Booklist, May 1, 2003, Roland Green, review of World War II on the Air, p. 1556.

Columbia Journalism Review, September-October, 2003, James Boylan, review of World War II on the Air, p. 57.

Library Journal, May 1, 2003, Mark Ellis, review of World War II on the Air, p. 133.

Publishers Weekly, April 21, 2003, review of World War II on the Air, p. 53.

School Library Journal, June, 2003, Mary Mueller, review of World War II on the Air, p. 155.

ONLINE

Decatur Daily Online,http://www.decaturdaily.com/ (October 22, 2003), Richard McCann, September 28, 2003, review of World War II on the Air.*