By Christopher Vials
Even supposing fascism is sometimes linked to Europe, the specter of fascism within the usa haunted the imaginations of activists, writers, and artists, spurring them to create a wealthy, complex physique of cultural and political paintings. Traversing the preferred entrance of the Nineteen Thirties, the fight opposed to McCarthyism within the Fifties, the Black strength stream of the Nineteen Sixties, and the AIDS activism of the Eighties, Haunted by means of Hitler highlights the worth of “antifascist” cultural politics, exhibiting the way it helped to border the nationwide discourse.
Christopher Vials examines the ways that anxieties approximately fascism within the usa were expressed within the public sphere, via American tv indicates, Off-Broadway theater, occasion newspapers, bestselling works of historical past, journalism, well known sociology, political concept, and different media. He argues that twentieth-century liberals and leftists have been extra deeply unsettled via the matter of fascism than these on the middle or the best and they tirelessly and sometimes effectively labored to counter America’s fascist equivalents.
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Additional info for Haunted by Hitler: Liberals, the Left, and the Fight Against Fascism in the United States
Outside the official bodies of the New Deal state, the liberal journals the New Republic, the Nation, Christian Century, and Common Sense published a substantial amount of antifascist commentary and reportage by such writers as Lewis Mumford, Bruce Bliven, Malcolm Cowley, and Waldo Frank, some of whom developed close ties to the Roosevelt administration. The radio work of Norman Corwin and Archibald MacLeish also marked crucial interventions. Finally, liberal pressure groups such as the Friends of Democracy, AJC, the American Committee Against Fascist Oppression, Samuel Untermyer’s Non-Sectarian Anti-Nazi League, the American Council Against Nazi Propaganda, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the academicled Institute for Propaganda Analysis, and the later Committee to Defend America by Aiding the Allies all engaged in antifascist lobbying and organizing.
Much the same picture is presented in France. There the outspoken criticism of the Chamberlain-Daladier policy comes from the Socialist and communist press. The left wingers, not only in Europe but also in this country, prefer the risks of war to the risks of peace. Left wing and pacifist are no longer synonymous, as they were twenty years and even ten years ago. The left wing has given its full support to preparations for war in all the important democratic countries and today, by and large, it is whooping for war and characterizing the refusal of Chamberlain and Daladier to resort to arms as both stupid and craven.
33 To cite a personal example, when I lived in Germany and was learning the language, I once asked a friend there if a certain politician from the Christian Democratic Party was right wing (rechts). Taken aback, he politely informed me that conservative politicians prefer to be called conservativ because in Germany rechts is generally associated with Nazis. No major scholar in this field has attempted to actually define the terms left and right when assigning fascism to a place on the political spectrum.