Evan Osnos
  • Articles
  • Age of Ambition Book Cover
  • May 14, 2014
    In Age of Ambition, The New Yorker's longtime China Correspondent Evan Osnos describes the greatest collision in China today: the clash between the rise of the individual and the Communist Party’s struggle to retain control.

    "The rise of China is the biggest story of the past twenty-five years. Evan Osnos captures the country in all its striving, thunderous diversity, through a narrative that moves, provokes, and makes us laugh. Age of Ambition is a marvel of great reporting, careful thinking, and powerful writing.”
    —Dexter Filkins, author of The Forever War

    "Scintillating reportage with an eye for telling ironies that illuminate broader trends."
    —Publishers Weekly

    Pre-order from the publisher
  • Articles
  • The New Yorker
    Published: 04.07.2014
    Chemical Valley
    The coal industry, the politicians, and the big spill.
    On the morning of Thursday, January 9, 2014, the people of Charleston, West Virginia, awoke to a strange tang in the air off the Elk River. It smelled like licorice. The occasional odor is part of life in Charleston, the state capital, which lies in an industrial area that takes flinty pride in the nickname Chemical Valley. In the nineteenth century, natural brine springs made the region one of America’s largest producers of salt. The saltworks gave rise to an industry that manufactured gunpowder, antifreeze, Agent Orange, and other “chemical magic,” as The Saturday Evening Post put it, in 1943. The image endured. Today, the Chemical Valley Roller Girls compete in Roller Derby events with a logo of a woman in fishnet stockings and a gas mask. After decades of slow decline, the local industry has revived in recent years, owing to the boom in cheap natural gas, which has made America one of the world’s most inexpensive places to make chemicals.
  • The New Yorker
    Published: 01.13.2014
    Confucius Comes Home
    Move over, Mao
    In my fifth year in Beijing, I moved into a one-story brick house beside the Confucius Temple, a seven-hundred-year-old shrine to China’s most important philosopher. The temple, which shared a wall with my kitchen, was silent. It had gnarled cypress trees and a wooden pavilion that loomed above my roof like a conscience. In the mornings, I took a cup of coffee outside and listened to the wakeup sounds next door: the brush of a broom across the flagstones, the squeak of a faucet, the hectoring of the magpies overhead.
  • The New Yorker
    Published: 12.16.2013
    Strong Vanilla
    The relentless rise of Kirsten Gillibrand
    Kirsten Gillibrand, the junior senator from New York, needs to pick up her five-year-old son, Henry, from his after-school program by 6 p.m. For every minute she is late, the school charges ten dollars. At 5 p.m. on November 12th, a Tuesday, Gillibrand still had two votes to cast and a meeting with Harry Reid, the Senate Majority Leader. Her husband, Jonathan, a financial consultant, works in New York City during the week, and, on short notice, she couldn’t find a sitter who was available before six-thirty. She ducked out of the Capitol and returned shortly afterward with Henry. She sat down with him in Reid’s office, where he busied himself with chicken fingers, chocolate milk, and a game of tic-tac-toe.