Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Prof. Michael Graetz Wins Sidney Hillman Foundation Book Award

Michael Graetz, Justus S. Hotchkiss Professor of Law, and co-author Ian Shapiro ‘87, Sterling Professor of Political Science, have won the Sidney Hillman Foundation Award for their book Death by a Thousand Cuts: The Fight Over Taxing Inherited Wealth (Princeton University Press, 2005).

The Sidney Hillman Foundation recognizes writers, journalists, and public figures who pursue social justice and public policy for the common good. The 2006 awards were given in the categories of non-fiction books, newspaper reporting, magazine reporting, film and broadcast journalism, and photojournalism to recognize work that challenged the way workers, immigrants, patients and retirees are treated by corporate and governmental institutions.

Death by a Thousand Cuts examines the 2001 repeal of the estate tax—a repeal that gained broad bi-partisan support despite the fact that the estate tax had been on the books continuously since 1916 and affected only the wealthiest two percent of Americans. Graetz and Shapiro interviewed members of congress, senators, and staffers from the key committees and the Bush White House, among others. Their book ultimately uses the story of the estate tax repeal as a lens through which to view American politics.

Besides this most recent book award, Death by a Thousand Cuts also received an Honorable Mention from the 2005 Awards for Excellence in Professional/Scholarly Publishing in Government and Political Science, given by the Association of American Publishers.