The Most Hated Man in America: Jerry Sandusky and the Rush to Judgment

Author:
Mark Pendergrast
Publisher:
Sunbury Press
Category:
General

This book appeared in Advance Copy, a column in which NASW book editor Lynne Lamberg asks NASW authors to tell how they came up with the idea for their book, developed a proposal, found an agent and publisher, funded and conducted research, and put the book together. She also asks what they wish they had known before they began working on their book, what they might do differently the next time, and what tips they can offer aspiring authors. She then edits the A part of that Q&A to produce the author reports you see here. Publication of NASW members’ reports in Advance Copy does not indicate NASW’s endorsement of their books. NASW welcomes your comments, and hopes this column stimulates productive discussions. To join the discussion or submit your book, visit Advance Copy.

Everyone knows the story of Jerry Sandusky, the serial pedophile, the Monster. But what if that story is wrong? What if the former Penn State football coach and founder of the Second Mile is an innocent man convicted in the midst of a moral panic fed by the sensationalistic media, police trawling, and memory-warping psychotherapy? The Most Hated Man in America reads like a true crime psychological thriller and is required reading for everyone from criminologists to sports fans.

“If potential readers are convinced that Jerry Sandusky is guilty, they need to read The Most Hated Man in America. This meticulously researched, provocative, and wonderfully written book by Mark Pendergrast, an enormously important contributor to the repressed memory debate, will certainly make them see another side. Maybe they will think twice.”

— Elizabeth Loftus, Distinguished Professor of Psychology & Social Behavior, University of California, Irvine, author, The Myth of Repressed Memory and other books.

“The Most Hated Man in America tells a truly remarkable story. In all the media coverage the Sandusky case has received, it’s amazing that no one else has noticed or written about so many of these things, including all the ‘memories’ that were retrieved through therapy and litigation. One would think that the sheer insanity of so much of this will have to eventually come out.”

— Richard A. Leo, Hamill Family Professor of Law and Psychology, University of San Francisco, author, Police Interrogation and American Justice and The Wrong Guys: Murder, False Confessions, and the Norfolk Four

“Virtually everybody knows with certainty that Jerry Sandusky is a serial child molester. He was, after all, found guilty by a jury of his peers. But what if what we think we know about Sandusky is at least in some ways incorrect? Regardless of their ultimate conclusions, readers will find The Most Hated Man in America to be thoughtful and provocative, addressing questions that deserve to be asked in a just society.”

— Fred S. Berlin, M.D., Ph.D. Director, The Johns Hopkins Sexual Behavior Consultation Unit, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine