George Makari won a 2022 Anisfield-Wolf Book Award prize in nonfiction for his third book, “Of Fear and Strangers: A History of Xenophobia.” Amid Brexit and election of Donald Trump in 2016, Makari decided to investigate how “we mis-know one another.”
Anisfield-Wolf juror Steven Pinker praised “Of Fear and Strangers,” noting, “We see countless books that consider instances of racism. Very few seek to understand it as a phenomenon to be studied and analyzed. ‘Of Fear and Strangers’ does that, free of cliché and jargon. Instead, it is replete with liveliness, wit and original turns of phrase.”
Makari joined The Asterisk* in January of 2023 in New York City, where he lives with his wife, the painter and curator Arabella Ogilvie-Makari. He is a psychiatrist who directs the DeWitt Wallace Institute of Psychiatry: History, Policy and the Arts at Weill Cornell Medical College in Manhattan. Makari grew up in New Jersey, earned his bachelor’s degree from Brown University and his M.D. from the Medical College of Cornell University.