Ethan Casey

Ethan Casey is the publisher of Blue Ear Books and the author, most recently, of A Dirt Road to the Future: Education on the Global Front Lines (2019), an account of one American university’s attempt to reexamine its role in the 21st-century world. His other books include Alive and Well in Pakistan (updated 10th anniversary edition 2014), Bearing the Bruise: A Life Graced by Haiti (2012), and Home Free: An American Road Trip (2013).

Alive and Well in Pakistan has been praised as “compulsory reading for anyone visiting Pakistan” by the Harvard International Review, “magnificent” by Ahmed Rashid, author of Taliban and Descent into Chaos, “intelligent and compelling” by Mohsin Hamid, author of The Reluctant Fundamentalist, and “wonderful … a model of travel writing” by Edwidge Danticat. In The Daily Telegraph, reviewer Alex Spillius wrote: “The author’s real journey is a search for common humanity.” Dr. Paul Farmer has called Bearing the Bruise “A heartfelt account [that] gives readers an informed perspective on many of the political and social complexities that vex those who seek to make common cause with Haiti.”Bill Steigerwald, author of Dogging Steinbeck, called Home Free “informed, entertaining, compassionate, yet always trustworthy” and Paul Rogat Loeb, author of Soul of a Citizen and The Impossible Will Take a Little While, said: “Ethan Casey listened hard and well in his books about Haiti and Pakistan. Now he’s listening to an America that’s dealing with uncertainty, division, and change.”

Ethan Casey has also edited many books by other authors as well as anthologies and collections. In ten days in September 2001, under extraordinary deadline pressure and in collaboration with Jay Rosen and New York University’s Department of Journalism, he edited 09/11 8:48 a.m.: Documenting America’s Greatest Tragedy, the first book-length collection of writings about the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, about which John Sutherland said in The Guardian:

09/11 8.48 a.m. accommodates the ‘shock of the new’ at journalistic speed, and with journalistic fluidity, yet still has the monumental authority of ‘the book’. … [Casey and Rosen] have functioned like conductors of an orchestra, blending others’ talents into unity. One is obliged to think analogically, because there has been nothing quite like this before.

Other anthologies he has edited include Peace Fire: Fragments from the Israel-Palestine Story (Free Association Books, 2002, co-edited with Paul Hilder) and Voices of America: Veterans and Military Families Tell Their Own Stories (co-edited with Maj. April Brown, USMC [ret.]), to be published in 2020 by TCU Press. Single-author books he has edited include Homeland (2003), British journalist Nick Ryan’s prescient account of far-right movements in Europe and the USA, and When Tribesmen Came Calling, Qaisar Shareef’s memoir of working in Pakistan and Ukraine as an executive with Procter & Gamble Company. He also brought back into print Clyde Edwin Pettit’s classic and distinctive account of the Vietnam War, The Experts. He is currently writing a book about the fight against the poaching of rhino horn in South Africa’s Eastern Cape province and collaborating on the memoir of a survivor of the 1978 mass suicide at Jonestown.

Ethan Casey previously worked as an international print journalist, based in Bangkok and London from 1993 to 2006 and writing for The Globe and Mail, the Boston Globe, the Observer News Service and the South China Morning Post, among other publications. He also co-founded and edited the pioneering online periodical Blue Ear (1999-2005) – praised by James Fallows as “ambitious” and “innovative” – and taught journalism at Beaconhouse National University in Lahore (2003-04). He lives in Seattle and speaks often at universities and other institutions around the United States. He can be contacted by email at ecasey@blueearbooks.com or on Twitter: @ec_blueearbooks