This compelling, critical analysis of anti-communism illustrates the variety of anti-Communist styles and agendas, thereby making a persuasive case that the "threat" of domestic communism in Cold War America was vastly overblown.
Though fewer than 300 people had been identified as spies for the Soviet Union, a “Red Scare” erupted, leading to the prosecution, proscription, and jailing of thousands of people—individuals who represented no threat at all to the national security of the United States. In fact, it is arguable that the time and resources devoted to exposing and punishing “Reds” weakened internal security by tearing gaping holes in the fabric of society and culture.
In the United States today, communism is an ideology or political movement that barely registers in the consciousness of our nation. Yet merely half a century ago, "communist" was a buzzword that every citizen in our nation was aware of—a term that connoted "traitor" and almost certainly a characterization that most Americans were afraid of.
Anti-Communism in Twentieth-Century America: A Critical History provides a panoramic perspective of the types of anti-communists in the United States between 1919 and the collapse of the Soviet Union. It explains the causes and exceptional nature of anti-communism in the United States, and divides it into eight discrete categories. This title then thoroughly examines the words and deeds of the various anti-Communists in each of these categories during the three "Red Scares" in the past century. The work concludes with an unapologetic assessment of domestic anti-communism. This book allows readers to more fully comprehend what the anti-communists meant with their rhetoric, and grasp their impact on the United States during the 20th century and beyond—for example, how anti-communism has reappeared as anti-terrorism.
• Pictures of the most notable anti-Communists
• A bibliography of books and articles consulted
• Offers a comprehensive, critical analysis of all varieties of anti-communism
• Provides an illuminating introductory analysis of the sources of anti-communism
• Demonstrates that the CPUSA was not a serious domestic threat to the United States
• Showcases the most important anti-Communists
• Depicts how anti-communism was an idée fixe and agenda item, not an ideology or worldview
• Argues that the United States needs an alien specter to function as it does