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Scott Turow
Scott Turow, January 2008
Born Scott Frederick Turow
(1949-04-12) April 12, 1949 (age 66)
Chicago, Illinois, United States
Occupation Novelist, lawyer
Alma mater Amherst College
Stanford University
Harvard Law School
Genre Fiction, legal thrillers

Scott Frederick Turow[1] (born April 12, 1949) is an American author and lawyer. Turow has written nine fiction and two nonfiction books, which have been translated into more than 40 languages and sold more than 30 million copies.[2] Films have been based on several of his books.

Life and career[edit]

Turow was born in Chicago, to a family of Russian Jewish descent.[3] He attended New Trier High School, and graduated from Amherst College in 1970, as a Brother of the Alpha Delta Phi Literary Society.[citation needed] He received an Edith Mirrielees Fellowship to the Stanford University Creative Writing Center, where he attended from 1970 to 1972. In 1971, he married Annette Weisberg, a painter. They divorced 35 years later.

Scott Turow later became a Jones Lecturer at Stanford, serving until 1975, when he entered Harvard Law School. In 1977, Turow wrote One L, a book about his first year at law school. After earning his Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree cum laude in 1978, Turow became an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Chicago, serving in that position until 1986. There he prosecuted several high-profile corruption cases, including the tax fraud case of state Attorney General William Scott. Turow also was lead counsel in Operation Greylord, the federal prosecution of Illinois judicial corruption cases.

After leaving the U.S. Attorney's Office, Turow became a novelist, beginning to write legal thrillers starting with Presumed Innocent, The Burden of Proof, Pleading Guilty, and Personal Injuries, which Time magazine named as the Best Fiction Novel of 1999. All four became bestsellers, and Turow won multiple literary awards, most notably the Silver Dagger Award of the British Crime Writers' Association.

In 1990, Turow was featured on the June 11 cover of Time, which described him as "Bard of the Litigious Age".[4] In 1995, Canadian author Derek Lundy published a biography of Turow, entitled Scott Turow: Meeting the Enemy (ECW Press, 1995). In the 1990s a British publisher bracketed Turow’s work with that of Margaret Atwood and John Irving, republished in the series Bloomsbury Modern Library.

Turow was elected the president of the Authors Guild in 2010[5][6] and was previously president from 1997 to 1998.[citation needed] As the Authors Guild president he has been criticized for his copyright maximalist and anti-ebook stance.[7] Turow has often responded that he is not against E-books and does the majority of his own reading electronically. His goal, he said often, is to protect writing as a livelihood.[8]

From 1997 to 1998 Turow was a member of the U.S. Senate Nominations Commission for the Northern District of Illinois, which recommends federal judicial appointments. In 2011, Turow met with Harvard Law School professor Lawrence Lessig to discuss political reform including a possible Second Constitution of the United States; according to one source, Turow saw risks with having such a convention, but believed that it may be the "only alternative" given how campaign money has undermined the one-man-one-vote principle of democracy.[9]

Turow is a partner of the international law firm Dentons having been a partner of one of its constituents, the Chicago law firm of Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal. Turow works pro bono in most of his cases, including a 1995 case where he won the release of Alejandro Hernandez, who had spent 11 years on death row for a murder he did not commit. He was also appointed to the commission considering the reform of the Illinois death penalty by former Governor George Ryan. He was the first Chair of Illinois' Executive Ethics Commission. He served as one of the 14 members of the Commission appointed in March, 2000, by Illinois Governor George Ryan to consider reform of the capital punishment system.[2] Turow also served as a member of the Illinois State Police Merit Board 2000-2002.





His non-fiction work Ultimate Punishment also received the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights 2003 Book award given annually to a novelist who "most faithfully and forcefully reflects Robert Kennedy's purposes - his concern for the poor and the powerless, his struggle for honest and even-handed justice, his conviction that a decent society must assure all young people a fair chance, and his faith that a free democracy can act to remedy disparities of power and opportunity."[11]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Scott Frederick Turow". Cookcountyclerk.com. 1949-12-04. Retrieved 2013-04-09. 
  2. ^ a b Scott Turow Bio
  3. ^ Scott Turow: a critical companion - Andrew F. MacDonald, Gina Macdonald - Google Books. Books.google.ca. 1949-04-12. Retrieved 2013-04-09. 
  4. ^ "Burden of Success". Time (Time Inc.) 135 (24). 1990-06-11. Retrieved 2009-03-29. 
  5. ^ The New York Times
  6. ^ The New York Times
  7. ^ "Authors Guild's Scott Turow: The Supreme Court, Google, Ebooks, Libraries & Amazon Are All Destroying Authors". Techdirt. Retrieved 2013-04-09. 
  8. ^ CBS This Morning October 16, 2013
  9. ^ James Warren of The Chicago News Cooperative (December 10, 2011). "Let’s Do Something About Privilege, Donors, Corporations and the Constitution". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-01-23. 
  10. ^ "Hard Listening". 
  11. ^ "RFKcenter.org". 

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scott_Turow — Please support Wikipedia.
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2695 news items

Crain's Chicago Business

Crain's Chicago Business
Mon, 31 Aug 2015 12:37:05 -0700

Scott Turow's reputation as an author has overshadowed his legal career since 1987 when his novel “Presumed Innocent” became a best-seller. Since then he's written more books, for a total of 12, and championed authors' economic rights during his four ...

La Repubblica

La Repubblica
Thu, 27 Aug 2015 01:10:39 -0700

Ha fatto quello che fanno i terroristi dell'Is. Ha voluto terrorizzare tutti col suo film fatto di odio e violenza...". Scott Turow, avvocato e per otto anni assistente del procuratore generale di Chicago, è il romanziere celebre in tutto il mondo per ...

Wall Street Journal

Wall Street Journal
Thu, 06 Aug 2015 16:48:45 -0700

Scott Turow, author and Chicago attorney, had the job of writing for Abraham Lincoln. He read through many Lincoln speeches before feeling he got the 16th president's style right. His monologue links Lincoln's personal history back to Chicago—a past ...

Alaska Dispatch News

Alaska Dispatch News
Sun, 23 Aug 2015 09:52:30 -0700

Both follow in the tradition of Scott Turow's acclaimed “Presumed Innocent” and are worthy of the comparison. Beyond the fact that Goodman, like Turow, is a lawyer-writer (or writer-lawyer) and writes from an insider's understanding of the legal ...


Wed, 26 Aug 2015 05:01:41 -0700

Yet he knew that, even if it had been a while since a writer more challenging than Scott Turow or Stephen King had appeared on the cover of Time, E. Annie Proulx, Toni Morrison, and Cormac McCarthy were still selling lots of books. Many of their ...


Thu, 27 Aug 2015 06:30:00 -0700

Yet he knew that, even if it had been a while since a writer more challenging than Scott Turow or Stephen King had appeared on the cover of Time, E. Annie Proulx, Toni Morrison, and Cormac McCarthy were still selling lots of books. Many of their ...

Wall Street Journal

Wall Street Journal
Thu, 20 Aug 2015 10:08:12 -0700

Authors United gathered 575 signatures for the letter, which is addressed to Assistant Attorney William Baer, who oversees the Justice Department's Antitrust Division. The list includes prominent authors such as Scott Turow, Nelson DeMille and Nora ...

Press Herald

Press Herald
Sun, 23 Aug 2015 01:03:36 -0700

His plot crafting made me think of Martin Cruz Smith and Scott Turow at their best. Hayman is also skilled at developing rich, fully textured characters, especially McCabe, who is flawed and endearing at once. For anyone familiar with greater Portland ...

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