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McCarthyism, New and Old

  • October 12, 2021
  • 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM (EDT)

McCarthyism, New and Old: 

Moderated discussion with historian and McCarthyism expert Ellen Schrecker.   

State legislatures prohibiting “anti-American” teaching. Vigilante groups publishing lists of “unpatriotic teachers.” Committees investigating who teaches what and where. Books banned. Paranoid rumors about brainwashing vulnerable youth.

All of the above is happening right now, affecting thousands of teachers. Rightwing politicians and cynical operators are whipping up public sentiment about “Critical Race Theory” as a subversive plot against America.

We have been here before. From the 1940s through the 1960s, reactionaries used anti-Communism as a weapon to attack educators at every level. Thousands were investigated, many jobs were lost, and “loyalty oaths” were required for decades. Textbooks were sanitized as patriotic myths took the place of careful analyses of evidence.

Ellen Schrecker looks at how the current assault on teaching the truth reprises the outrages of the Cold War red scare, while the activist educators, Jennifer Ruth and Jesse Hagopian, describe what’s happening today and how teachers at every level are combatting it. Historian Van Gosse moderates the discussion.

Register to attend.

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