The American Prospect

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The American Prospect
American Prospect February 1, 2006.png
The American Prospect, cover dated February 1, 2006
Editor Robert Kuttner and Paul Starr[1]
Categories U.S. politics and public policy
Frequency Bi-Monthly
Total circulation
(December 2012)
37,398 [2]
Year founded 1990
Company The American Prospect, Inc.
Country United States
Based in Washington, D.C.
Language American English
ISSN 1049-7285

The American Prospect is a bi-monthly American political magazine dedicated to American liberalism. Based in Washington, D.C., The American Prospect is a journal of liberal ideas, committed to a just society, an enriched democracy, and effective liberal politics'[3] which focuses on United States politics and public policy. Politically, the magazine is in support of modern American liberalism, similar to The New Republic and The Nation.


According to the website of The American Prospect, "at the dawn of a new progressive era and a time of economic transformation for the United States and the world, the magazine's founding purpose was to demonstrate that progressive ideas could animate a majority politics; to restore to intellectual and political respectability the case for social investment; to energize civic democracy and give voice to the disenfranchised; and to counteract the growing influence of conservative media."[4]


The magazine was founded in 1990 (and initially called The Liberal Prospect) by Robert Kuttner, Robert Reich, and Paul Starr as a response to the perceived ascendancy of conservatism in the 1980s. It currently enjoys a monthly readership of 25,000 and an online readership of nearly 500,000.[4]

The American Prospect has run a writing fellows program that offers young journalists the opportunity to spend two years at the magazine, blogging as well as contributing to the print magazine. The current fellows are Patrick Caldwell and Jamelle Bouie; past fellows have included Adam Serwer, Tim Fernholz, Matt Yglesias, Ezra Klein, Chris Mooney, Joshua Marshall, Dana Goldstein, and Kate Sheppard. Former staff writers and contributors include Gabriel Arana, National Magazine Award winner Tom Carson, Steve Erickson, E.J. Graff, Harold Meyerson, Monica Potts, and Abby Rapoport.

In March 2010, The American Prospect entered into an affiliation with the Demos, a public policy research and advocacy center based in New York City. The official affiliation ended in 2012.

In 2010, The American Prospect was the recipient of Utne Reader magazine's Utne Independent Press Award for Political Coverage.[5]

In April 2014, Kit Rachlis announced he was leaving the editorship of the magazine. [6] Kuttner and Starr returned as co-editors to run the magazine on a day-to-day basis for the first time in 20 years.


Originally The American Prospect published quarterly, then bimonthly. In 2000, thanks to a grant from the Schumann Center for Media and Democracy, it became biweekly.[7] Financial and logistical difficulties ensued, and the magazine moved to a 10-issue-per-year format in spring 2003 and a bimonthly format in summer 2012. The online version of the magazine formerly included an active blog called TAPPED (derived from TAP, the acronym of The American Prospect), as well as a blog by Adam Serwer. It now hosts several blogging "voices."


Notable recent contributors to the magazine and blog have included Michelle Goldberg, Harold Meyerson, Robert Kuttner and Matt Yglesias. Past contributors include Jonathan Chait, Jonathan Cohn, Joshua Green, Joshua Micah Marshall, Jedediah Purdy, Chris Mooney, Matthew Yglesias, Michael Massing, Joe Conason, Michael Tomasky, Ezra Klein, and Scott Stossel. Recent executive editors have included (from oldest to latest) Michael Tomasky, Harold Meyerson, Mark Schmitt, and Kit Rachlis.


  1. ^ American Prospect likely to become quarterly ‘journal of ideas’
  2. ^ "Foreign Policy Business Publication Circulation Statement". BPA Worldwide. December 2012. Retrieved February 22, 2013. 
  3. ^ "About Us". Archived from the original on 5 February 2007. Retrieved 2013-12-20. 
  4. ^ a b TAP mission
  5. ^ "Winners of the 2010 Utne Independent Press Awards". Retrieved 27 October 2010. 
  6. ^ Myles, Tanzer. "Reporter". Buzzfeed. Buzzfeed. Retrieved 13 July 2014. 
  7. ^ Goodison, Donna L. (June 14, 2002). "Just what are the prospects for The American Prospect?". Boston Business Journal. 

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