The Dark Side (book)

The Dark Side
Author Jane Mayer
Country United States
Language English
Subject Political convictions
Publisher Doubleday
Publication date
July 2008
Media type Print (Hardcover)
Pages 392
ISBN 978-0307456298

The Dark Side: The Inside Story of How the War on Terror Turned Into a War on American Ideals (2008) is a non-fiction book written by the American journalist Jane Mayer about Islamic radicalism, the War on Terrorism, and the "closed-doors domestic struggle over whether" U.S. President George W. Bush should have "limitless power to wage it".[1] The book details the origins of controversies such as the coercive interrogation program, in which detainees were tortured, and the NSA electronic surveillance program of domestic surveillance without court warrants.


The book became a best-seller in non-fiction hardcover in the United States, with its author Jane Mayer booked on various news programs for interviews. It later made the New York Times Book Review editors' list of "10 Best Books of 2008"[2] and was nominated for the 2008 National Book Critics Circle Award in General Nonfiction.[3] The book was a finalist for the National Book Awards.[4]

It also received the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights 29th annual book award in 2009, given 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."[5]

See also


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