Sarah Chayes

Author, Paris, France & West Virginia, US

Sarah Chayes’s unusual trajectory has led her from reporting from Paris for National Public Radio and covering the fall of the Taliban in Afghanistan, to running a soap factory in their former capital, Kandahar, in the midst of a rising insurgency. She went on to advise the topmost levels of the U.S. military, including serving as special assistant to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. She left the Pentagon for a five year stint at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, where she examined corruption and its impacts on six continents. She is the author of The Punishment of Virtue: Inside Afghanistan After the Taliban (2006), Thieves of State: Why Corruption Threatens Global Security (2015), an L.A. Times Book Prize winner, and On Corruption in America: And What Is at Stake (2021), published in the UK as Everybody Knows: Corruption in America. She is now turning her gaze to the the most important challenge of our time: humans’ relationship with the rest of the natural world. She lives in Paris and Paw Paw, West Virginia.

Written by Sarah Chayes