John Dos Passos

John Dos Passos's picture

Best known as a novelist and member of the "Lost Generation" of American writers, Dos Passos (1896–1970) turned to writing history later in his career. His 1954 book The Head and Heart of Thomas Jefferson helped revived interest in our third President. Dos Passos served in World War I as an ambulance driver with his friend, the poet E.E. Cummings and in 1937, he returned to Spain with his friend Ernest Hemingway to cover the Spanish Civil War. During his distinguished career, Dos Passos wrote forty-two novels, as well as numerous poems, essays, and plays. His most widely read books were a 1925 novel about life in New York City, Manhattan Transfer, and the U.S.A. Trilogy, the first book of which appeared in 1930.

Articles by this Contributor

December 1956

Washington was his idol, but he could not apply his American ideals to a France sliding into the Terror

October 1956

Skillful money-juggling by America’s first financier aided the new nation but led Morris himself to utter ruin

August 1959

Among his many other achievements, Jefferson was one of the leading architects of his day, responsible for the introduction of the Greek Revival style into America.

February 1966

No one who met him ever forgot him. His charm captivated beautiful women, his eloquence moved the United States Senate to tears, his political skills carried him to the very threshold of the White House. Yet while still Vice President he was indicted for murder, and was already dreaming the dreams of empire that would bring him to trial for treason. After a century and a half, historians still cannot decide whether he was a traitor, a con man, or a mere adventurer. Now, a distinguished writer enters the controversy with an account of