The Price of Silence: The Duke Lacrosse Scandal, the Power of the Elite, and the Corruption of Our Great Universities (2020)

The Price of Silence: The Duke Lacrosse Scandal, the Power of the Elite, and the Corruption of Our Great Universities William D. Cohan The Price of Silence The Duke Lacrosse Scandal the Power of the Elite and the Corruption of Our Great Universities Bestselling author William D Cohan whose reporting and writing have been hailed as gripping the New York Times authoritative the Washington Post and seductively engrossing Chicago Tribune prese
  • Title: The Price of Silence: The Duke Lacrosse Scandal, the Power of the Elite, and the Corruption of Our Great Universities
  • Author: William D. Cohan
  • ISBN: 9781451681796
  • Page: 429
  • Format: Hardcover
The Price of Silence: The Duke Lacrosse Scandal, the Power of the Elite, and the Corruption of Our Great Universities William D. Cohan Bestselling author William D Cohan, whose reporting and writing have been hailed as gripping the New York Times , authoritative the Washington Post , and seductively engrossing Chicago Tribune , presents a stunning new account of the Duke lacrosse team scandal that reveals the pressures faced by America s elite colleges and universities and pulls back the curtainBestselling author William D Cohan, whose reporting and writing have been hailed as gripping the New York Times , authoritative the Washington Post , and seductively engrossing Chicago Tribune , presents a stunning new account of the Duke lacrosse team scandal that reveals the pressures faced by America s elite colleges and universities and pulls back the curtain, in a riveting narrative, on the larger issues of sexual misconduct, underage drinking, and bad boy behavior all too prevalent on campuses across the country Despite being front page news nationwide, the true story of the 2006 Duke lacrosse team rape case has never been told in its entirety and is complex than all the reportage to date would indicate The Price of Silence is the definitive, magisterial account of what happens when the most combustible forces in American culture unbridled ambition, intellectual elitism, athletic prowess, aggressive sexual behavior, racial bias, and absolute prosecutorial authority collide and then explode on a powerful university campus, in the justice system, and in the media.What transpired at Duke followed upon the university s unprecedented and determined effort to compete directly with the Ivy League for the best students and with its Division I rivals for supremacy in selected sports most famously men s basketball, where Duke has become a perennial powerhouse and the winner of four national championships As Cohan brilliantly shows, the pursuit of excellence in such diverse realms put extraordinary strains on the campus culture and warned some longtime Duke observers warped the university s academic ethos Duke became known for its work hard, play hard dynamic, and specifically for its wild off campus parties, where it seemed almost anything could happen and often did.Cohan s reconstruction of the scandal s events the night in question, the local police investigation, Duke s actions, the lacrosse players defense tactics, the furious campus politics is meticulous and complete Readers who think they know the story are in for than one surprise, for at the heart of it are individuals whose lives were changed forever As the scandal developed, different actors fought to control the narrative At stake were not just the futures of the accused players, the reputation of the woman claiming she was raped, and the career of the local prosecutor, but also the venerable and carefully nurtured name of Duke University itself the Duke brand, exceedingly valuable when competing for elite students, world class athletes, talented professors, and the financial support of its nationally prominent, deep pocketed alumni The battle for power involved the Duke administration, led by its president, Richard Brodhead, a blazing academic star hired away from Yale the Duke board of trustees, which included several titans of Wall Street the faculty, comprising a number of outspoken critics of the lacrosse players the athletes parents, many of whom were well connected in Washington and New York and able and willing to hire expensive counsel to defend their sons and, ultimately, the justice system of North Carolina, which took over the controversial case and rendered its judgment.The price of resolving the scandal proved extraordinarily high, both in terms of unexpected human suffering and the stratospheric costs of settling legal claims The Price of Silence is a story unlike any other, yet sheds light on what is really happening on campuses around the country as colleges and universities compete urgently with one another, and confirms William Cohan s preeminent reputation as one of the most lively and insightful journalists working today.
The Price of Silence: The Duke Lacrosse Scandal, the Power of the Elite, and the Corruption of Our Great Universities William D. Cohan

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One thought on “The Price of Silence: The Duke Lacrosse Scandal, the Power of the Elite, and the Corruption of Our Great Universities

  1. Becky Morlok

    Full disclosure I am a NC native I attended prep school and college in Raleigh.I majored in criminal justice and spent 13 years employed within the federal court system and private law firms My son was an applicant to Duke in 2006, first for early decision and then for regular admittance My husband was an All America athlete from the north who came south on a college scholarship to swim at NC State I was also a member of that close knit team My brother in law and his entire family are Duke alumn [...]

  2. Kris

    If you have absolutely no faith in humanity and want to have this point of view reinforced, this is the book for you No matter what you ve already heard about this story, you ll be let down even further The prosecutor must have simply lost his mind the Duke administration couldn t get its act together the accuser, for whom I have at least a bit of pity along with my horror, was so psychologically damaged I can t believe anyone ever wanted to take this case to court and the three accused, whom th [...]

  3. Brandon Forsyth

    I didn t know much about the Duke lacrosse case, so I found the details documented here extremely interesting It s easy to see why the case was so controversial, and Cohan does a great job of summarizing it from the multiple different viewpoints involved However, the book occasionally feels like a collection of press releases, especially when Cohan quotes extensively from original documents, and the book never really lives up to its subtitle Those expecting a look at the corrupting power of the [...]

  4. Stephanie

    I was interested in hearing about this scandal that happened a few years back The author was talking about it on the news and it sounded interesting However, I think this book had lots of filler, and contrary to what I heard in the interview, there weren t really any new revelations in this book If you want to learn about this event, I m sure there are better accounts out there, and I wish I had chosen wisely.

  5. Kyle

    Few closely involved with the Duke lacrosse scandal of 2006 will find much to like about Cohan s book There are no clear cut good guys or bad guys here just a lot of muddled gray, and some actions taken by some individuals that were clearly not good, or at least not the best way things could have been done Those who think the lacrosse players got away with rape will be disappointed by the book those who think the prosecutor went on the warpath in order to get election publicity will also not be [...]

  6. Crick Waters

    I started at Duke as a Naval ROTC, Delta Sigma Phi, varsity swimmer, when the drinking age for beer in North Carolina was 18 Liquor required one to be 21 We could buy pitchers of beer in the dining hall for 2 on our meal cards in those days beer on points Our big fraternity parties were held off campus and we wore suits and ties Twenty years later, when this scandal erupted, Duke had become a different social place.I ignored the lacrosse scandal when it was happening for the simple reason that t [...]

  7. Sarah

    I m going to steal from a comment I made to a friend instead of rewriting my thoughts for review Despite the subtitle, I thought it was of a retelling of the specifics of this scandal than a serious look at corruption and wealth in elite universities In my opinion, he completely failed at making it a larger story about privilege and power, because he was so bogged down in the intricacies and local context of specific power, race, and class issues for Duke and Durham At the end, he tried to make [...]

  8. Kirsti

    I wasn t sure if I wanted to read a 600 plus page book about a crime that did not actually happen But I was interested in learning about this case, which had such dramatic allegations and then fell apart spectacularly Cohan writes and reports well enough that the book held my interest until the end.What I learned If you are boorish enough to call up an escort service and ask that two female strangers come to your house and dance naked in front of you and 40 of your drunken friends, don t be sho [...]

  9. Carol Storm

    Meticulously researched, brutally honest, and absolutely epic in scope, this work of journalism starts out as true crime, recording a sordid incident at Duke University, where several wealthy, white lacrosse players may or may not have sexually assaulted a young black stripper The narrative broadens as the chapters pass, however, to become a searching examination of race prejudice, class prejudice, liberal hypocrisy, human greed, and base passions Absolutely no one in this book walks away with c [...]

  10. Cindy Garza

    It might seem like a small thing, but if a writer is going to ask me to stick with him for 614 pages, I wish he would at least show the courtesy of running it through a spell checker, and in this instance I might argue that he should let an editor cut some very over detailed explication I m all for balance, but I don t think it s necessary to quote every single statement of every participant in such excruciating detail to get there.It won t make me look for other books by the same writer, but it [...]

  11. Julie

    This is revisionist history at its worst.I recently read Until Proven Innocent , another book on this same case and the hype surrounding it, and I was curious about this book Unfortunately, this book failed miserably in large part because the author seems to be trying to rewrite history, to shape the case to fit his own narrative and or bias He relies on statements from an unethical and disgraced prosecutor Nifong and tries to insinuate, in the face of overwhelming and incontrovertible evidence [...]

  12. Tony Walton

    The author relies on statements from an unethical and disgraced prosecutor Nifong who has been dis barred and tries to insinuate, in the face of overwhelming and incontrovertible evidence of the young men s innocence, that something happened in that bathroom This book is a horrific manipulative look at a shameful case.Duke paid out millions in civil suit settlements I hope Duke learned a lesson.

  13. Nicholas

    William Cohan delivers a painstakingly detailed portrait of everything that went wrong at Duke when a woman hired to strip at a lacrosse party accused three of the team s players of rape And that is precisely the problem it is painstakingly detailed Cohan seems to have included every single piece of evidence, every interview, every newspaper account, every appearance by a talking head, every blog post, every blog comment in this 614 page tome It s too much He and his editor should have understoo [...]

  14. Alan Kaplan

    Voluminous reporting on the infamous Duke lacrosse scandal Major points are repeated over and over again At over 600 pages, this is an exhausting read and a completely unnecessary one Was there an editor involved in this book Cohan attempts to rehabilitate the rogue prosecutor, Mike Nifong and the accuser, Crystal Mangum I found this book insulting, a typical liberal screed against supposed white privilege at an upper crust university Nifong has since been disbarred and convicted of contempt Man [...]

  15. Amy

    This book is 600 pages in microscopic font I read about 150 of those pages non consecutively in a single sitting before realizing that I was never going to finish this book nor was I personally inclined to.What appeals to me most about this book is the representation of Duke as a bacchanal whether or not this representation is fair, I believe there are specific decisions that Duke made its history to bring about these intended and unintended consequences I sometimes sit and wonder whether a worl [...]

  16. Frank Richardson

    I think one of the most interesting aspects of the book is the history of the author William Cohan I heard him interviewed on NPR He related that he worked on Wall St for 17 years and then quit to write books He remarked that he wrote 3 books about Wall St and they all sold very well so when it came time to write his 4th book his publisher was, of course, pushing for another Wall St book but Mr Cohan wanted to write this book, which is about alleged rape of a stripper at a party with the lacross [...]

  17. Laura

    Duke alumnus William Cohan s rehashing of the Duke lacrosse scandal is too long, very repetitive, and not very focused The other major book on the case which involves three lacrosse team members accused of raping an exotic dancer after a party gone bad focuses on the district attorney s missteps Said district attorney was eventually disbarred for his actions and the player exonerated I picked this book up interested in what Cohan would say about the power of the elite and its corrupting effect o [...]

  18. Eric

    This is a tale of a perfect scandal privileged white student athletes sexually assault working class African American woman, revealing the sorry depths of racism and misogyny still thriving in the American south Only one problem they didn t do it My feelings about this book are tangled with my memories of the case, which I followed closely I was sure the accused players were guilty, after all I ve known so many high school and college athletes who behaved just like this and could easily have com [...]

  19. Meg Ulmes

    I read about half this book and then skipped to the end It is hard to read because the corruption, especially the use of power and influence to determine the outcome of a legal case and determine the fates of the people involved It is a sad statement on our universities and the morality of our college students, their parents, and the administrations who protect them and their institutions It is a paean to rewarding bad judgment.

  20. Roxanne Hayes

    I was fascinated with the first couple hundred pages and thought there were interesting topics addressed role of the university, legal issues, the affect of changing the drinking age to 21 But second half went on too long Long sections were transcripts of interviews Needed editing Quite pessimistic and discouraging in tone One reviewer here said if you have no faith in humanity, this is the book for you I agree

  21. Alasdair Ekpenyong

    Recommended reading for anyone planning to take the LSAT This book is a good summary of all the messiness, comedy, irony, and sadness of the American legal system You ll cry You ll laugh really, really hard, and then you ll cry again.

  22. Caitie

    Well, I think this book is important, considering the Me Too movement and everything However, I m giving this two stars mostly because thus author is very long winded I felt like he took a long time to get to the point of the book That point being sometimes people do rush to judgement and many institutions, like Duke University or Hollywood studios for that matter want to cover it up or at least minimize it to protect their image This main point did not need over eight hundred pages to explain a [...]

  23. Reid Mccormick

    The Price of Silence by William D CohanWhen I was in college I remember hearing about the Duke Lacrosse scandal but I did not follow the case whatsoever It did not affect me in any way then and I definitely was not thinking about how a rape case in Duke can affect higher education By the time I started working in higher education, the news cycle had completely forgotten and abandoned the case It was no longer the hot topic of the day.I picked up this book simply because I wanted and needed to kn [...]

  24. loafingcactus

    The book is extraordinarily complete and will probably be the book people read about this matter in 100 years Thus, the final note excusing the lack of footnotes is obnoxious in the extreme Failing to leave breadcrumbs for future researchers it s just so extraordinarily self centered and a failure to be a good member of the community.What is most maddening, reading this book in 2014, is the continued insistence from all sides that the case is some kind of extraordinary exception First the colleg [...]

  25. William Koon

    If you ever asked yourself who is corrupt than the police, the district attorney s office, a college president, the media, a great university, the faculty of certain disciplines such as English, ethnic studies, history, you d have to add in a few Rape crisis centers, women s studies, and civil rights leaders All are shown to be of the same garbage pail in this exhaustive study of the Duke lacrosse rape case There was no rape case at all but merely a chance for all of the above to crucify innoc [...]

  26. Benn Allen

    After reading William D Cohan s The Price of Silence , I feel like I went the entire Duke Lacrosse incident myself Not in a good way either I mean I feel like I ve gone each and every agonizing second of the day of everyone involved in the scandal And that s because Cohan chose to liberally quote from almost every damned magazine, newspaper article, every televised news report, every blog, every editorial, even a Saturday Night Live sketch about the scandal My god, it s one thing to be thorough, [...]

  27. John Spiller

    This was really 3.5 stars I will echo what many have said this book is too long It s not the length that s the problem it s how the same events are rehashed time and again The author set about to present a real time record of how the Duke Lacrosse Scandal unfolded In doing so, however, he tended to dwell too long on tangential matters, while at other times he failed to put certain things in context The author felt compelled to quote at length from newspaper articles even when the additional quo [...]

  28. Christina Boyle

    Race, class, misogyny all mixed in one The students at the center of the story sound profoundly un self aware perplexing given their liberal arts coursework and immature, to stay the least It would be difficult to feel much sympathy if you cursorily read about the case in passing But a vast miscarriage of justice occurred with the DA looking to profit from the sensational case as an advertisement for re election It is really frightening how your civil rights can be quite tenuous with an overzeal [...]

  29. Roger

    Being a big lacrosse person, playing in college, blogging about my Fairfield University Stags, a high school and youth official in Westchester, NY, and finally a lacrosse parent, I had to read the book on the Duke Lacrosse scandal The charges of rape against three members of the Duke Lacrosse team created a media storm in 2006 The reported sexual assualt of a black exotic dancer by white uppper middle class athletes captivated the nation for months Was it a true story What role did the police pl [...]

  30. Arthur

    Well, I m torn on this one I was certainly aware of the Duke case as it was happening At the time of the case, I doubted the charges against the three young players I didn t know of any evidence to support my view, just that it was taking on the typical leftist slant, both racially and economically Reading this book gave me much detail on the case, perhaps than I or anyone needs I now have a reinforced view of the case and the injustice of it However, I caution you, if you know little about the [...]

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