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The Opinions Of Mankind

Author: Richard Lentz
Publisher: University of Missouri Press
ISBN: 0826272347
Size: 20.81 MB
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During the Cold War, the Soviets were quick to publicize any incident of racial hostility in the United States. Since violence by white Americans against minorities was the perfect foil to America’s claim to be defenders of freedom, news of these occurrences was exploited to full advantage by the Russians. But how did the Soviets gain primary knowledge of race riots in small American towns? Certainly, the Soviets had reporters stationed stateside, in big cities like New York, but research reveals that the majority of their information came directly from U.S. media sources. Throughout this period, the American press provided the foreign media with information about racially charged events in the United States. Such news coverage sometimes put Washington at a disadvantage, making it difficult for government officials to assuage foreign reactions to the injustices occurring on U.S. soil. Yet in other instances, the domestic press helped to promote favorable opinions abroad by articulating themes of racial progress. While still acknowledging racial abuses, these press spokesmen asserted that the situation in America was improving. Such paradoxical messages, both aiding and thwarting the efforts of the U.S. government, are the subject of The Opinions of Mankind: Racial Issues, Press, and Propaganda in the Cold War. The study, by scholars Richard Lentz and Karla K. Gower, describes and analyzes the news discourse regarding U.S. racial issues from 1946 to 1965. The Opinions of Mankindnot only delves into the dissemination of race-related news to foreign outlets but also explores the impact foreign perceptions of domestic racism had on the U.S. government and its handling of foreign relations during the period. What emerges is an original, insightful contribution to Cold War studies. While other books examine race and foreign affairs during this period of American history, The Opinions of Mankind is the first to approach the subject from the standpoint of press coverage and its impact on world public opinion. This exhaustively researched and compellingly written volume will appeal to media scholars, political historians, and general readers alike. By taking a unique approach to the study of this period, The Opinions of Mankind presents the workings behind the battles for public opinion that took place between 1946 and 1965.

Culture And Propaganda

Author: Sarah Ellen Graham
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317155920
Size: 39.63 MB
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Throughout the twentieth century governments came to increasingly appreciate the value of soft power to help them achieve their foreign policy ambitions. Covering the crucial period between 1936 and 1953, this book examines the U.S. government’s adoption of diplomatic programs that were designed to persuade, inform, and attract global public opinion in support of American national interests. Cultural diplomacy and international information were deeply controversial to an American public that been bombarded with propaganda during the First World War. This book explains how new notions of propaganda as reciprocal exchange, cultural engagement, and enlightening information paved the way for innovations in U.S. diplomatic practice. Through a comparative analysis of the State Department’s Division of Cultural Relations, the government radio station Voice of America, and the multilateral cultural, educational and scientific diplomacy of Unesco, and drawing extensively on U.S. foreign policy archives, this book shows how America’s liberal traditions were reconciled with the task of influencing and attracting publics abroad.

The History Of United States Cultural Diplomacy

Author: Michael L. Krenn
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
ISBN: 1472508785
Size: 47.19 MB
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In the wake of 9/11, the United States government rediscovered the value of culture in international relations, sending cultural ambassadors around the world to promote the American way of life. This is the most recent effort to use American culture as a means to convince others that the United States is a land of freedom, equality, opportunity, and scientific and cultural achievements to match its material wealth and military prowess. In The History of United States Cultural Diplomacy Michael Krenn charts the history of the cultural diplomacy efforts from Benjamin Franklin's service as commissioner to France in the 1770s through to the present day. He explores how these efforts were sometimes inspiring, often disastrous, and nearly always controversial attempts to tell the 'truth' about America. This is the first comprehensive study of America's efforts in the field of cultural diplomacy. It reveals a dynamic conflict between those who view U.S. culture as a means to establish meaningful dialogues with the rest of the world and those who consider American art, music, theater as additional propaganda weapons.

Cold War Civil Rights

Author: Mary L. Dudziak
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 1400839882
Size: 57.72 MB
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In 1958, an African-American handyman named Jimmy Wilson was sentenced to die in Alabama for stealing two dollars. Shocking as this sentence was, it was overturned only after intense international attention and the interference of an embarrassed John Foster Dulles. Soon after the United States' segregated military defeated a racist regime in World War II, American racism was a major concern of U.S. allies, a chief Soviet propaganda theme, and an obstacle to American Cold War goals throughout Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Each lynching harmed foreign relations, and "the Negro problem" became a central issue in every administration from Truman to Johnson. In what may be the best analysis of how international relations affected any domestic issue, Mary Dudziak interprets postwar civil rights as a Cold War feature. She argues that the Cold War helped facilitate key social reforms, including desegregation. Civil rights activists gained tremendous advantage as the government sought to polish its international image. But improving the nation's reputation did not always require real change. This focus on image rather than substance--combined with constraints on McCarthy-era political activism and the triumph of law-and-order rhetoric--limited the nature and extent of progress. Archival information, much of it newly available, supports Dudziak's argument that civil rights was Cold War policy. But the story is also one of people: an African-American veteran of World War II lynched in Georgia; an attorney general flooded by civil rights petitions from abroad; the teenagers who desegregated Little Rock's Central High; African diplomats denied restaurant service; black artists living in Europe and supporting the civil rights movement from overseas; conservative politicians viewing desegregation as a communist plot; and civil rights leaders who saw their struggle eclipsed by Vietnam. Never before has any scholar so directly connected civil rights and the Cold War. Contributing mightily to our understanding of both, Dudziak advances--in clear and lively prose--a new wave of scholarship that corrects isolationist tendencies in American history by applying an international perspective to domestic affairs. In her new preface, Dudziak discusses the way the Cold War figures into civil rights history, and details this book's origins, as one question about civil rights could not be answered without broadening her research from domestic to international influences on American history.

Citizens Of Asian America

Author: Cindy I-Fen Cheng
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 0814770088
Size: 20.25 MB
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Winner, 2013-2014 Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature, Adult Non-Fiction presented by the Asian Pacific American Librarian Association During the Cold War, Soviet propaganda highlighted U.S. racism in order to undermine the credibility of U.S. democracy. In response, incorporating racial and ethnic minorities in order to affirm that America worked to ensure the rights of all and was superior to communist countries became a national imperative. In Citizens of Asian America , Cindy I-Fen Cheng explores how Asian Americans figured in this effort to shape the credibility of American democracy, even while the perceived “foreignness” of Asian Americans cast them as likely alien subversives whose activities needed monitoring following the communist revolution in China and the outbreak of the Korean War. While histories of international politics and U.S. race relations during the Cold War have largely overlooked the significance of Asian Americans, Cheng challenges the black-white focus of the existing historiography. She highlights how Asian Americans made use of the government’s desire to be leader of the “free world” by advocating for civil rights reforms, such as housing integration, increased professional opportunities, and freedom from political persecution. Further, Cheng examines the liberalization of immigration policies, which worked not only to increase the civil rights of Asian Americans but also to improve the nation’s ties with Asian countries, providing an opportunity for the U.S. government to broadcast, on a global scale, the freedom and opportunity that American society could offer.

Race And The Totalitarian Century

Author: Vaughn Rasberry
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674972996
Size: 18.20 MB
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Vaughn Rasberry turns to black culture and politics for an alternative history of the totalitarian century. He shows how black writers reimagined the standard anti-fascist, anti-communist narrative through the lens of racial injustice, with the U.S. as a tyrannical force in the Third World but also an agent of Asian and African independence.

Jimmy Carter In Africa

Author: Nancy Mitchell
Publisher: Stanford University Press
ISBN: 0804799180
Size: 53.80 MB
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In the mid-1970s, the Cold War had frozen into a nuclear stalemate in Europe and retreated from the headlines in Asia. As Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter fought for the presidency in late 1976, the superpower struggle overseas seemed to take a backseat to more contentious domestic issues of race relations and rising unemployment. There was one continent, however, where the Cold War was on the point of flaring hot: Africa. Jimmy Carter in Africa opens just after Henry Kissinger's failed 1975 plot in Angola, as Carter launches his presidential campaign. The Civil Rights Act was only a decade old, and issues of racial justice remained contentious. Racism at home undermined Americans' efforts to "win hearts and minds" abroad and provided potent propaganda to the Kremlin. As President Carter confronted Africa, the essence of American foreign policy—stopping Soviet expansion—slammed up against the most explosive and raw aspect of American domestic politics—racism. Drawing on candid interviews with Carter, as well as key U.S. and foreign diplomats, and on a dazzling array of international archival sources, Nancy Mitchell offers a timely reevaluation of the Carter administration and of the man himself. In the face of two major tests, in Rhodesia and the Horn of Africa, Carter grappled with questions of Cold War competition, domestic politics, personal loyalty, and decision-making style. Mitchell reveals an administration not beset by weakness and indecision, as is too commonly assumed, but rather constrained by Cold War dynamics and by the president's own temperament as he wrestled with a divided public and his own human failings. Jimmy Carter in Africa presents a stark portrait of how deeply Cold War politics and racial justice were intertwined.

The Last Hot Battle Of The Cold War

Author: Peter Polack
Publisher: Casemate Publishers
ISBN: 1612001955
Size: 12.27 MB
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As the Soviet Union teetered on the edge of collapse during the late 1980s, and America prepared to claim its victory, a bloody war still raged in Southern Africa, where proxy forces from both sides vied for control of Angola. The result was the largest battle on the dark continent since Al Alamein, with forces from both sides paying in blood what U.S.-Soviet diplomats were otherwise spending in diplomacy. The socialist government of Angola and its army, FAPLA, fully stocked with Soviet weapons, had only to wipe out a massive resistance group, UNITA, secretly supplied by the U.S, in order to claim full sovereignty over the country. A giant FAPLA offensive so threatened to succeed in overcoming UNITA that apartheid-era South Africa stepped in to protect its own interests. The white army crossing the border prompted the Angolan government to call on their own foreign reinforcementsÑthe army of Communist CubaÕs. Thus began the epic battle of Cuito Cuanavale, largely unknown in the U.S., but which raged for three months in the entirely odd match-up of South African Boers vs. CastroÕs armed forces, which for the first time in the Cold War proved what it could achieve. And it turned out the Cubans were very good. The South Africans were no slouches at warfare themselves, but had suffered under a boycott of weapons since 1977. The Cubans and Angolan troops, instead, had the latest Soviet weapons, easily delivered. But UNITA had its secret U.S. supply line and the South Africans knew how to fight, mainly at a disadvantage in air power for lack of spare parts. Meantime the Cubans overcame their logistic difficulties with an impressive airlift of troops over the Atlantic, while the Boers simply needed to drive next door. As a case study of ferocious fighting between East and WestÑalbeit proxies for the great powers on all sidesÑthis book unveils a remarkable episode of the end-game of the Cold War largely unknown to the public. The Angolans on both sides suffered heavily, but it was the apartheid South Africans versus CastroÕs armed forces that provides utter fascination in one of historyÕs rare match-ups.

Selling Apartheid

Author: Nixon, Ron
Publisher: Jacana Media
ISBN: 1431422533
Size: 25.66 MB
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“This is an important story that needs to be told about the apartheid government’s global lobbying effort …” – Eleanor Holmes Norton, US House of Representatives “This is a tale of intrigue, rich characters and large chequebooks, played out in all the Western capitals. This book is for those who want to understand the full intricacies of the Washington–London–Bonn–Pretoria relationship during the years of white minority rule, and the tough strategic and moral questions it raised.” – Anton Harber, Caxton Professor of Journalism, Wits University Selling Apartheid tells the story of the South African propaganda campaign, run with military precision, which involved a worldwide network of supporters, including global corporations with business operations in South Africa, conservative religious organisations and an unlikely coalition of liberal US black clergy and anti-communist black conservatives aligned with right-wing Cold War politicians. A large focus of the campaign was put on the United States because as its one-time coordinator, Eschel Rhoodie, wrote: “America dominates Western thought as far as Africa is concerned.” Not even the exposure of the programme by South African journalists in the late 1970s, which would bring down a president and send Rhoodie on the run, would stop the worldwide campaign. In fact, it would expand and morph into a much larger and subtler operation. It would end in the early 1990s, only after domestic problems caused the government to focus its energies on issues at home. The book details interviews with many of the players, such as South African government ministers and civil servants, corporate leaders, anti-apartheid leaders and others, providing a behind-the-scenes look at the attempt to sell apartheid abroad. In addition, thousands of previously unreleased records from both the South African and the United States archives will help shed light on the scope of the campaign and reveal an astonishing story. “During the course of writing this book, I have asked many people just how successful the efforts of the South African government were to try to influence world policy-makers and ward off the inevitable. In other words, what did Pretoria accomplish by spending hundreds of millions of dollars over nearly five decades on its campaigns to win hearts and minds overseas? Neither the commissions set up by the South African government to investigate secret funding nor the Truth and Reconciliation Commission ever attempted to answer the question of what the apartheid government received for the billions it spent on lobbying, setting up front groups and companies, and buying off politicians and journalists. Part of the problem lies with the absence of records. It is common knowledge that the apartheid government deliberately and systematically destroyed thousands of pages of records related to its propaganda activities before the handover of power to the ANC in 1994.” – Ron Nixon