The Age of McCarthyism: A Brief History with Documents / Edition 1

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Incorporating important recent scholarship, this popular supplement combines a comprehensive essay on the history of McCarthyism with compelling documents that trace the course of anti-Communist furor in the U.S. The volume’s 95-page essay follows the campaign against domestic subversion from its origins in the 1930s through its escalation in the 1940s to its decline in the 1950s. The second part includes over 47 original documents (including 6 new sources) — congressional transcripts, FBI reports, speeches, and letters — that chronicle the anti-Communist crusade. The essay and documents have been thoroughly updated to reflect new scholarship and recently revealed archival evidence of Soviet spying in the U.S. Also included are headnotes to the documents, 15 black-and-white photographs, a glossary, a chronology of McCarthyism, a revised bibliographical essay, and an index.

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Editorial Reviews

The first section comprises an essay of about 100 pages discussing the origins, escalation, and demise of the anti- Communist campaign in the US. The second part consists of 22 congressional transcripts, FBI reports, speeches, letters, and other original documents from the era. Also includes an extensive bibliographical essay, a chronology, and b&w photos. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312083496
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 3/28/1994
  • Series: Bedford Series in History and Culture
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 274
  • Product dimensions: 5.51 (w) x 8.23 (h) x 0.44 (d)

Meet the Author

Ellen Schrecker is professor of history at Yeshiva University, where she has taught since 1987. Widely recognized as one of the nation's leading experts on McCarthyism, she has published many books and articles on the subject including Many Are the Crimes: McCarthyism in America (1998), a Choice "Outstanding Academic Book, 1998," and No Ivory Tower: McCarthyism and the Universities (1986), winner of the History of Education Society's Outstanding Book Award for 1987. The recipient of fellowships from the Bunting Institute and the National Humanities Center, she has taught at Harvard and Princeton. Since 1998 she has also been the editor of Academe, the magazine of the American Association of University Professors.
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Table of Contents




The Age of McCarthyism

The American Communist Party

The Growth of the Anti-Communist Network

Communism and National Security: The Menace Emerges

The State Steps In: Setting the Anti-Communist Agenda

Communists in Government and the Big Spy Cases

Atomic Espionage

The Loyalty-Security Program

The Assault on the Communist Party

The Destruction of the Communist Fronts and Unions

Congressional Committees and Unfriendly Witnesses

Red-Baiting and Careerism: Joseph McCarthy at Work

Congressional Investigations and the "Loss" of China

Anticommunism at the State and Local Levels

Blacklists and Other Economic Sanctions

Liberals and the Struggle against McCarthyism

The Legacy of McCarthyism


The Documents

1. The World of American Communism: Party

Members Talk about Their Experiences

Howard Johnson, A Communist in Harlem,

November 16, 1979

David Friedman, A New York City Schoolteacher

in the Party, October 23, 1979

Marge Frantz, A Longtime Woman Activist in the Party,

August 22, 1981

Rose Krysak, A Rank-and -File Communist in the 1950s,

October 31, 1979

2. From the Communist Party’s Perspective:

William Z. Foster Looks at the World in 1947

William Z. Foster, The New Europe, 1947

The Communist Menace: An American Legion View

James F. O’Neil, How You Can Fight Communism,

August 1948

4. To Quarantine Communism: J. Edgar Hoover

Speaks to the American People

J. Edgar Hoover, Testimony before HUAC, March 26, 1947

5. Communist Spies in the State Department:

The Emergence of the Hiss Case

Washington KGB, Telegram to Moscow, March 30, 1945

Whittaker Chambers, Testimony before HUAC,

August 3, 1948

Alger Hiss, Testimony before HUAC, August 5, 1948

Whittaker Chambers, Testimony before HUAC,

August 7, 1948

Alger Hiss, Testimony before HUAC, August 16, 1948

Whittaker Chambers and Alger Hiss, Testimony

before HUAC, August 17, 1948

Whittaker Chambers, Statement to the FBI,

December 3, 1948

6. Atomic Espionage and the Rosenberg Case

Klaus Fuchs, Confession to William Skardon,

January 27, 1950

New York KGB, Telegram to Moscow, November 12, 1944

New York KGB, Telegram to Moscow, November 14, 1944

New York KGB, Telegram to Moscow, November 27, 1944

A. H. Belmont, Office Memorandum on Julius Rosenberg,

July 17, 1950

J. Edgar Hoover, Memorandum to the Attorney General,

July 19, 1950

Judge Irving Kaufman, Sentencing of Julius and Ethel

Rosenberg, April 5, 1951

Ethel Rosenberg, Letter to Julius Rosenberg,

February 26, 1952

Julius Rosenberg, Letter to Ethel Rosenberg, May 31, 1953

7. The Truman Administration Deals with the Communist Menace: The 1947 Loyalty-Security Program

Harry S. Truman, Executive Order 9835,

March 21, 1947

8. A Political Test for Employment:

The Loyalty-Security Program in Operation

The Federal Loyalty-Security Program: Case 1

The Federal Loyalty-Security Program: Case 2

9. Guilt by Designation: The Attorney General’s List

The Attorney General’s List of Totalitarian, Fascist,

Communist, Subversive, and Other Organizations,

November 16, 1950

10. Communism in Court: Excerpts from the 1949 Smith Act Trial of the Communist Party’s Eleven Top Leaders

John F. X. McGohey, Opening Statement on Behalf of the

Government, March 21, 1949

Eugene Dennis, Opening Statement on Behalf of the

Communist Party, March 21, 1949

Louis Budenz, Testimony, March 1949

11. Outlawing the Communist Party: The Supreme Court Upholds the Smith Act

Chief Justice Fred Vinson, Majority Opinion in Dennis

et al. v. United States, June 4, 1951

Justice Hugo Black, Dissenting Opinion in Dennis

et al. v. United States, June 4, 1951

12. A Liberal Opposes Anti-Communist Legislation:

Truman Vetoes the Internal Security Act of 1950

Harry S. Truman, Veto of the Internal Security Act of 1950,

September 22, 1950

13. Purging the Labor Movement: The CIO Expels Its Left-Wing Unions

Resolution on Expulsion of the United Electrical, Radio,

and Machine Workers of America, November 1949

14. The Dilemma of an Unfriendly Witness: Lillian Hellman Takes the Fifth Amendment

Lillian Hellman, Letter to HUAC, May 19, 1952

15. "Are You Now …?": HUAC Investigates Hollywood

John Howard Lawson, Testimony before HUAC,

October 27, 1947

Ring Lardner Jr., Testimony before HUAC,

October 30, 1947

16. "I Have in My Hand ...": Senator Joseph McCarthy Charges That There Are Communists in the State Department

Senator Joseph McCarthy, Speech at Wheeling, West Virginia, February 9, 1950

The Hollywood Blacklist Begins: Studio Heads Fire the Hollywood Ten

The Waldorf Statement, December 3, 1947

The Blacklisters’ Bible: Red Channels

Red Channels: The Report of Communist Influence in Radio and Television, 1950

The Blacklist in Operation: Testimony from the John Henry Faulk Trial

David Susskind, Testimony in Faulk v. AWARE, 1962

Mark Goodson, Testimony in Faulk v. AWARE, 1962

Kim Hunter, Testimony in Faulk v. AWARE, 1962

Everett Sloan, Testimony in Faulk v. AWARE, 1962

Unfriendly Witnesses and Their Lawyers: The HUAC Testimony of Robert Treuhaft

Robert Treuhaft, Testimony before HUAC,

December 3, 1953

Heresy and Conspiracy: A Cold War Liberal View of the Communist Threat

Sidney Hook, Heresy, Yes—But Conspiracy, No,

July 9, 1950

A Liberal Deplores the Witch-Hunt: Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas on "The Black Silence of Fear"

William O. Douglas, The Black Silence of Fear, January 13, 1952



A McCarthyism Chronology (1917–1976)

Interpreting McCarthyism: A Bibliographical Essay


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