Witness

  • by Whittaker Chambers
  • Narrated by John MacDonald
  • 30 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

First published in 1952, Witness came on the heals of America's trial of the century, in which Whittaker Chambers accused Alger Hiss, a full-standing member of the political establishment, of spying for the Soviet Union. In this penetrating philosophical memoir, Chambers recounts the famous case as well as his own experiences as a Communist agent in the United States, his later renunciation of communism, and his conversion to Christianity. Chambers' worldview - "man without mysticism is a monster" - helped to make political conservatism a national force. Witness packs the emotional wallop and the literary power of a classic Russian novel and has gained Chambers recognition by critics on both sides of the spectrum as a truly gifted writer.

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What the Critics Say

"One of the few indispensable autobiographies ever written by an American - and one of the best written too.... It deserves to be recognized as a first class achievement." (New Centurion)
"Confession, history, potboiler - by a man who writes like the literary giant we would know him as, had not Communism got him first." (Christopher Caldwell, National Review, 100 Best Non-Fiction Books of the Century)
"This many-dimensioned apologia, which is also a spy drama, a Quaker testament, and a spiritual autobiography, telescopes the major political and religious conflicts of the century." (Booklist)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Great history about Communism

I paid attention in history class, but Whitaker Chambers was never mentioned in my education. I knew about Alger Hiss and Senator McCarthy's pursuit of communists, but I didn't know about Chambers until I heard a Princeton professor discussing him on a C-Span book review show. I have never read a non fiction work with such a soul searching narrative of how a man becomes a communist, what it means to be a communist, how the communist party operated in the US in the 1930s and 40s, and how difficult, lonely and terrifying it is to leave the communist party and be persecuted by the liberal media, the government and public opinion. Whitaker Chambers is a great writer and a very courageous man, and in the end his allegations against Hiss triumph but not without a great personal sacrifice. I was deeply moved by his story and his courage.
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- Susan

I concur - One of the best on Audible!

One of the reviews which sold me on this listen stated that this was perhaps the best book on Audible. I totally concur. Whittaker Chambers is an amazing writer with a compelling story to tell. The narration is excellent. The history of the Communist Party in the US explains some things about the political landscape today. Chambers is an engaging unassuming individual with insights one can only gain through personal turmoil. Pure excellence!
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- Eunice

Book Details

  • Release Date: 12-02-2008
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.