The Truths We Cling To: Un-Americanism and the Dies Committee Research Paper by Grahamdubya

The Truths We Cling To: Un-Americanism and the Dies Committee
An examination of American political history between 1900 and 1941, focusing on revolutionary and radical threats to the government of the United States.
# 145142 | 2,858 words | 9 sources | MLA | 2007 | US

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In this article, the writer discusses that since the first "alphabet soup" agency proposed by Franklin Roosevelt, the New Deal has been assailed as socialism in America, and as a break with history and the American spirit. The writer maintains that from the turn of the twentieth century until the outbreak of World War II, the threat from both Fascism and Communism remained all too real, and this paper aims to show that the New Deal's relative moderation in fact saved America from a revolution. By tracing the history of 'un-Americanism' and the official Congressional Committee tasked with rooting it out, one may see just how threatened the United States has been - and just how close the country came to full-scale rebellion.

From the Paper:

"What does it mean to be 'un-American?' For most of the twentieth century, a congressional committee took upon itself the mission of defining that vague and often misused term. The committee went through different iterations and attacked different targets. By 1946, one thing was clear: the most un-American belief one could hold was that of Communism. Before then, however, the McCormack-Dickstein Committee, precursor to the House Un-American Activities Committee, had as its task the investigation of fascism and fascist plots. The very definition of 'un-Americanism' has evolved at an astounding pace throughout the twentieth century, and continues to change to this day. It was under the chairmanship of Martin Dies, however, that the committee took up the crusade for which it was most infamous and which would last for half a century: anti-communism."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Archer, Jules. The Plot to Seize the White House: The Shocking True Story of the Conspiracy to Overthrow FDR. New York: Skyhorse Publishing, 2007.
  • Gallup, George H. The Gallup Poll: Public Opinion 1935-1971. New York: Random House, 1972.
  • Flynn, John T. The Roosevelt Myth. New York: Devin-Adair, 1948.
  • Lewy, Guenter. The Cause That Failed: Communism in American Political Life. New York: Oxford University Press, 1990.
  • Morgan, Ted. Reds: McCarthyism in Twentieth-Century America. New York: Random House, 2004.

Cite this Research Paper:

APA Format

The Truths We Cling To: Un-Americanism and the Dies Committee (2010, October 26) Retrieved October 05, 2022, from

MLA Format

"The Truths We Cling To: Un-Americanism and the Dies Committee" 26 October 2010. Web. 05 October. 2022. <>