The “others” of America

Through the portrayal of these naysayers as “others”, the American government attempted to silence those who challenged the Cold War mentality of sacrificing individual freedom for the greater good. It is relevant because it describes how the American government issued a norm of compliance with government regulation. 

Initially, I hope to be able to present a depiction of this atmosphere of compliance through the use of personal account and scholarly analysis. I want to link this need for compliance with how American actions were being publicized internationally. For an example, I will analyze the suppression of civil rights activists such as Paul Robeson. I will utilize the dichotomy of civil rights during the Cold War era to represent the comparison between domestic reality and the different image that America presented of itself to the rest of the world. To support the idea of suppression of the general public, I will bring in the hearings of the House UnAmerican Activities Committee (HUAC). Specifically, the hearing of Paul Robeson, a civil rights activist who refused to decry communism, and the hearing of John Howard Lawson, head of the Screenwriter’s Guild and the leader of the Communist Party, both represent HUAC attempting to “muzzle public opinion.” While the paper is more generally about the attack of government issued “otherness” unto society, I will stress the suppression of civil rights mainly because it serves as a direct example of attempted cultivation of a different American image at the expense of a portion of society.


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