Dear Democracy Now! Visitor: We are an independent, ad-free daily news program that serves millions of viewers and listeners each month. In this US election year, Democracy Now! is more important than ever. For 20 years, we’ve put a spotlight on corporate and government abuses of power. We lift up the stories of ordinary people working to make change in extraordinary times. We do all of this with just a fraction of the budget and staff of a commercial news show. We do it without ads, corporate sponsorship or government funding. How is this possible? Only with your support. A generous funder will match your donation dollar for dollar if you donate right now. That means when you give $10, your donation will be worth $20. Pretty exciting, right? So, if you've been waiting to make your contribution to Democracy Now!, today is your day. It takes just a couple of minutes to make sure that Democracy Now! is there for you every day.

Your Donation: $

Many Are the Crimes: Mccarthyism in America

October 16, 2001
Story
WATCH FULL SHOW

The poet Wallace Stevens wrote that "All history is modern history." Well, in recent weeks we’ve seen a surge of attacks on academics and virtually anyone else criticizing US foreign policy and a wave of efforts around the country to enforce a certain brand of patriotism. All of this has an uncomfortable ring for dissidents who lived through or have studied the period of US history known as McCarthyism. McCarthyism encompassed far more than the brief career of Senator Joseph McCarthy. It was the most widespread episode of political repression in the history of the United States. In the name of National Security, most Americans—liberal and conservative alike-supported an anti-Communist purge of government, the arts, academia, the labor movement, and many other institutions. It’s a purge whose legacy lingers on today.

Guest:

  • Ellen Schrecker, author of ??Many Are the Crimes: McCarthyism in America and ??No Ivory Tower: McCarthyism and the Universities and widely recognized as one of the leading experts on McCarthyism and the 1950’s. Schrecker has also written about contemporary academic freedom. She is a professor of history at Yeshiva University. From the New York Times review of "Many Are the Crimes:" Her strident partisanship is such that this book is destined only to become a grand summary and the best example of the many leftist tirades against "the great fear" that have become commonplace, especially since the 1960’s.

The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.