Inquiry (magazine)

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Inquiry magazine cover.png
Cover of first issue
21 Nov 1977–26 May 1980
9 & 23 Jun–22 Sep 1980
6 Oct 1980–17 May 1982
Jun 1982–Jul 1984
Senior Editors
Associate Editors
Consulting Editor
Contributing Editors
Categories Politics
  • Biweekly
21 Nov 1977–21 Aug 1978
  • Semimonthly
18 Sep 1978–17 May 1982
  • Monthly
Jun 1982–Jul 1984
Founder Williamson M. Evers[1]
Year founded 1977
First issue 21 November 1977
Final issue July 1984
21 Nov 1977–11 & 25 Jan 1982
15 Feb 1982–Jul 1984
Country United States of America
Based in
21 Nov–5 Dec 1977
19 Dec 1977–11 Dec 1978
25 Dec 1978–10 Sep 1979
30 Sep 1979–?
Language English
ISSN ‹See Tfm›0148-5008
OCLC number 3456688

Inquiry was a libertarian magazine published from November 1977 to 1984. It was originally published by the Cato Institute, then later transferred to the Libertarian Review Foundation.


Inquiry Magazine was originally founded as part of the Cato Institute, in an effort by libertarian political donors Charles Koch and Ed Crane to build public policy institutions for the libertarian movement. Williamson Evers was its first editor.[2] After Evers was ousted as editor in a dispute with Crane,[3] Glenn Garvin took over in 1980.[4] Doug Bandow served as editor from 1982 until the magazine's closure in 1984.[5][6] At different points in its history, its editorial staffers included Jonathan Marshall, Mark Paul, Ralph Raico, and Jack Shafer. Its poetry editor was Dana Gioia.

In the early 1980s, Koch and Crane grew dissatisfied with the publishing efforts they supported, which included Inquiry Magazine and the Libertarian Review. They decided stop publishing the Libertarian Review and move Inquiry Magazine from the Cato Institute to the control of the separately-managed Libertarian Review Foundation at the beginning 1982. With the June 1982 issue, Inquiry Magazine was retitled Inquiry: A Libertarian Review. The magazine's circulation had always been low and had declined below 10,000. Citing financial concerns, Koch and Crane closed the magazine in 1984.[5][7]

The magazine originally was published biweekly from 1977 to 1978, then switched to semi-monthly, with about 20 issues per year in its first four and a half years of publication. In 1982 it switched to monthly publication, then went to 10 issues a year in 1984. The final issue was published in July 1984.[8]

During its run, it made available bound collections of issues from its first four volumes ('77–'78, '78–'79, '79–'80, '80–'81).

Audience and viewpoints[edit]

Established along with Cato, Inquiry was initially a journal of investigative reporting and libertarian-oriented opinion. The magazine was aimed at libertarians and at liberals and leftists critical of state power.[9] It featured regular columns by Nat Hentoff on civil liberties and Thomas Szasz on psychiatry, foreign reporting by Penny Lernoux, and CIA exposes by such writers as David Wise and Fred Landis. It included extensive cultural coverage as well, including reviews by Anthony Burgess and film criticism by Stephen Harvey.


  1. ^ Raico, Ralph (9 & 23 June 1980). "A Word from the Publisher". Inquiry Magazine. 3 (12): 1.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  2. ^ Doherty, Brian (2007). Radicals for Capitalism: A Freewheeling History of the Modern American Libertarian Movement. New York: Public Affairs. p. 410–412. ISBN 1-58648-350-1. OCLC 76141517. 
  3. ^ Burris, Charles (4 February 2011). "Kochs v. Soros: A Partial Backstory". Retrieved 28 November 2013. 
  4. ^ Raico, Ralph (6 October 1980). "A Word from the Publisher". Inquiry Magazine. 3 (17): 1. 
  5. ^ a b Doherty, Brian (2007). Radicals for Capitalism: A Freewheeling History of the Modern American Libertarian Movement. New York: Public Affairs. p. 448–450. ISBN 1-58648-350-1. OCLC 76141517. 
  6. ^ Riley, Sam G., ed. (1995). "Bandow, Douglas". Biographical Dictionary of American Newspaper Columnists. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press. p. 20. ISBN 0-313-29192-6. OCLC 32091148. 
  7. ^ Dionne, E.J. (1991). Why Americans Hate Politics. New York: Simon and Schuster. pp. 273–276. ISBN 0-671-68255-5. OCLC 25996605. 
  8. ^ Inquiry periodical information sourced from Library of Congress Authorities data, via corresponding WorldCat Identities linked authority file (LAF) . Retrieved on 28 November 2013.
  9. ^ Huebert, Jacob H. (2010). Libertarianism Today. Santa Barbara, California: Praeger. p. 17. ISBN 978-0-313-37754-9. 

External links[edit]