The Godfather of Tabloid: Generoso Pope Jr. and the National Enquirer


They're impossible to miss at grocery stores and newsstands in America: colorful, heavily illustrated tabloid newspapers with headlines promising shocking, unlikely, and sometimes impossible stories within. Although ubiquitous now, the supermarket tabloid's origin can be traced to one man: Generoso Pope Jr. (1921–1988), an eccentric, domineering chain-smoker who died of a heart attack at the age of sixty-one. In The Godfather of Tabloid, Jack Vitek explores the life and career of Pope and the founding of the mother of all tabloids, the National Enquirer. Upon graduating from MIT, Pope worked briefly for the CIA until he purchased the New York Enquirer with dubious financial help from mob boss Frank Costello. Working with American journalists and Brits from Fleet Street, Pope changed the name, format, and content of the modest newspaper until it resembled nothing America had seen before. Grounded in interviews with Pope and his detractors and associates,The Godfather of Tabloidis the first comprehensive look at the life of a man who created a newspaper genre and changed the world of publishing forever.


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