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McCarthyism - Page Text Content

BC: "After the Purge." The Guardian. 9 August 2005. 24 February 2008. . Griffith, Robert. "McCARTHY, Joseph Raymond, (1908-1957). "Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. 22 Feb 2008. . "House Un-American Activities Committee." The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers. The George Washington University. 24 February 2008. . "House Un-American Activities Committee." The Reader's Companion to American History. Eds. Eric Fonder and John A. Garraty. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1991. "McCarthy, Joseph R." The Reader's Companion to American History. Eds. Eric Fonder and John A. Garraty. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1991. "McCarthyism." American Masters. PBS. 24 February 2008. . "McCarthyism." Spartacus Educational. 24 February 2008. . "McCarthyism." Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia. 16 February 2008. Wikimedia Foundation. 24 February 2008. . Schrecker, Ellen. ""Congressional Committees and Unfriendly Witnesses." The Age of McCarthyism. Boston: St. Martin's Press, 1994.

FC: McCarthyism

1: A Compilation by Grant Canipe, Neil Mehta, Neil Quinn, and Yan Greben

2: Joseph Raymond McCarthy was born in Grand Chute, Wisconsin on November 14, 1908. He earned his law degree from Marquette University in 1935. He was elected as a Republican for the United States Senate in 1946 and served until his death. Beginning in 1950, McCarthy became the most visible public figure of a period of extreme anti-communist suspicion inspired by the Cold War.

3: McCarthy used charges of communism and disloyalty to attack a number of politicians. The term "McCarthyism," referenced to McCarthy's practices of anti-communist pursuits. McCarthy died on May 2, 1957 at the age of 48 due to acute hepatitis, which was caused by alcoholism.

4: The House Committee on Un-American Activities | Although McCarthy never served on it (he was a senator, not a representative), its accusations were a model for his ("House" Eleanor). Formed in 1938 to investigate disloyalty of all types, it came into its own shortly after World War II, as anti-Communist feeling began to rise. Many in Congress supported it in an attempt to appear tough on Communism, and it had the power, like any Congressional committee, to jail witness for refusing to answer its questions ("House" Reader's).

5: The committee generally operated by making wide-ranging accusations of disloyalty and forcing witnesses to give names of other supposed communist sympathizers. Even being mentioned was thought of as sign of guilt. Generally, it uncovered people with left-leaning political views, but none of the far-reaching communist conspiracy of which it had warned ("House" Reader's). Despite this, witnesses who refused to cooperate were often jailed or stripped of their passports ("McCarthyism" American). | Being accused by the committee could destroy an entire career. Many of the writers and actors accused by the committee during its well-know investigations into communism in Hollywood were unable to find work for decades afterwards ("After"). McCarthy, for his part, led the Senate Committee on Governmental Operations and used its Subcommittee on Investigations to do much the same thing ("McCarthy"). One historian has called the hearings held by the groups "symbolic ritual[s] designed to expose someone as a member or former member of the Communist party" of which "exposure, not information, was the goal" (Schrecker).

6: The Accused Victims | of McCarthyism

7: The exact number of victims is hard to ascertain. The number imprisoned nears a thousand, and more than 10,000 lost their job due to accusations. In most cases, a simple subpoena by the HUAC was enough justification for sudden unemployment. While it is true that some of the accused were indeed Communist backers and spies, most of the afflicted had no viable threat to the United States.

8: Blacklists began to form of suspected Communists. These incriminating lists were featured in a variety of professions. An interesting sidenote is the fact that suspected homosexuality was a common cause for being targeted during McCarthyism. In fact, some scholars think that this might have resulted in more persecutions than ties to Communism .

9: Charlie Chaplin | W.E.B. DuBois | Langston Hughes | Arthur Miller | Ronald Reagan | Linus Pauling

10: Impact Upon Society

11: A large variety of groups supported McCarthyism. Far-right radicals were the base of its support, but the "aggrieved" also gave support. A variety of groups also supported it, including the American Legion, Christian fundamentalists and various other anti-communist organizations.

12: Most people justified their support for McCarthyism with their image of communism, mainly the image of american communism. There was a number of "loyalty review boards" that looked at communism.

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