Anti-Communism and Popular Culture in Mid-Century America

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Overview

Not long after the Allied victories in Europe and Japan, America's attention turned from world war to cold war. The perceived threat of communism had a definite and significant impact on all levels of American popular culture, from government propaganda films like Red Nightmare in Time magazine to Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle.

This work examines representations of anti-communist sentiment in American popular culture from the early fifties through the mid-sixties. The discussion covers television programs, films, novels, journalism, maps, memoirs, and other works that presented anti-communist ideology to millions of Americans and influenced their thinking about these controversial issues. It also points out the different strands of anti-communist rhetoric, such as liberal and countersubversive ones, that dominated popular culture in different media, and tells a much more complicated story about producers' and consumers' ideas about communism through close study of the cultural artifacts of the Cold War.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780786414406
  • Publisher: McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers
  • Publication date: 12/19/2002
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 183
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Cyndy Hendershot is an associate professor of English at Arkansas State University and the author of four books of literary criticism (including this one). She has published articles in Science-Fiction Studies, Mosaic, and Literature and Psychology and other journals.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction 1
1 The Seduction of Communism 9
2 Paranoiac Discourse and Anti-Communism 18
3 Internal and External Communism in Popular Film 27
4 The Individual Russian and the Communist System 40
5 Anti-Communism and Ambivalence in Science Fiction 52
6 Criminals and Communists in Fifties Popular Culture 67
7 Anti-Communism and Movie Serials 76
8 Cold War Parody 83
9 Nuclear Apocalypse and Anti-Communism 97
10 Cold War Confessions and the FBI Plant 108
11 Anti-Communism and the Business World 121
12 The Bear and the Dragon: Representations of Communism in Early Sixties American Culture 130
Conclusion 144
Notes 153
Works Cited 163
Index 171
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