Lewis Lapham

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Person.png Lewis Lapham   C-SPAN IMDB NNDB WikidataRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
(writer, editor)
Lewis H. Lapham at ALA.jpg
BornLewis Henry Lapham
January 8, 1935
San Francisco, California
Alma materHotchkiss School, Yale University, Magdalene College (Cambridge)
ParentsLewis A. Lapham
SpouseJoan Brooke Reeves
Member ofCouncil on Foreign Relations/Members 2
US journalist. Editor of Harper's Magazine. Attended the 1973 Bilderberg

Not to be confused with Lewis A. Lapham

Lewis Henry Lapham is an American establishment writer who attended the 1973 Bilderberg conference. He was the editor of the American monthly Harper's Magazine from 1976 until 1981, and from 1983 until 2006.[1] Applied to the CIA in 1957, but turned to journalism instead.

Personal life

A son of Lewis A. Lapham and Jane Foster, Lapham was born and grew up in San Francisco. His grandfather Roger Lapham was mayor of San Francisco, and his great grandfather, Lewis Henry Lapham, was a founder of Texaco. Through his grandfather, Lapham is a first cousin once removed of actor Christopher Lloyd, although they are three years apart in age. As a child, he attended the Hotchkiss School.

During his childhood, he saw the Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav Molotov, the United States Foreign Minister John Foster Dulles and the Saudi Prince Faisal pass through his parents house.[2]

Lapham was educated at Magdalene College, Cambridge and Yale University, where he was a member of St. Anthony Hall.

In 1957, after graduating from Yale University, he applied to the CIA. However, allegedly rejected, he reoriented himself towards journalism.[2]

In 1972, Lapham married Joan Brooke Reeves, the daughter of Edward J. Reeves, a stockbroker and grocery heir, and Elizabeth M. Brooke (formerly the wife of Thomas Wilton Phipps, a nephew of Nancy Astor). They have three children:

  • Delphina (married Prince Don Bante Maria Boncompagni-Ludovisi)[3]
  • Andrew (married Caroline Mulroney, only daughter of former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney)
  • Winston

Harper's Magazine

Lewis Lapham served as editor of Harper's Magazine from 1976 to 2006 (with a hiatus from 1981 to 1983). He was managing editor from 1971 to 1975, after having worked for the San Francisco Examiner and the New York Herald Tribune. He is largely responsible for the modern look and prominence of the magazine, having introduced many of its signature features, including the "Harper's Index". He announced that he would become editor emeritus in spring 2006, continuing to write his Notebook column for the magazine as well as editing a new journal about history, Lapham's Quarterly. Lapham has also worked with the PEN American Center, sitting on the board of judges for the PEN/Newman's Own First Amendment Award. In 2007, he was inducted into the American Society of Magazine Editors' Hall of Fame.[4]

Fake reporting from the Republican National Convention

Lapham wrote a September 2004 column for Harper's in which he included a brief account of the Republican National Convention as if he had witnessed it, "reflecting on the content and sharing with readers a question that occurred to him as he listened", as Jennifer Senior wrote in the New York Times Book Review.[5] The magazine arrived in subscribers' mailboxes before the convention took place, as Senior says "forcing Lapham to admit that the scene was a fiction". The columnist apologized, "but pointed out political conventions are drearily scripted anyway – he basically knew what was going to be said". Senior continues, "By this logic, though, I could have chosen not to read Pretensions to Empire before reviewing it, since I already knew Lapham's sensibility, just as he claims to know the Republicans."[5] Senior's reading of Pretensions to Empire was called into question by her claim that the convention essay was "conspicuously" missing, yet an edited version of the essay opens the book. The New York Times published a correction and Senior described her error as "an honest mistake".[6]


Events Participated in

Bilderberg/197311 May 197313 May 1973Sweden
The meeting at which the 1973 oil crisis appears to have been planned.
WEF/Annual Meeting/200421 January 200425 January 2004Switzerland2068 billionaires, CEOs and their politicians and "civil society" leaders met under the slogan Partnering for Prosperity and Security. "We have the people who matter," said World Economic Forum Co-Chief Executive Officer José María Figueres.
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