McCarthyism

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McCarthyism

  1. 1. McCarthyism The McCarthy Era (1950s)
  2. 2. McCarthyism <ul><li>Anti-Communist hysteria and suspicion </li></ul><ul><li>Americans turned on their fellow citizens </li></ul><ul><li>Denounced Americans as Communist sympathizers based on little or no evidence </li></ul>
  3. 3. Senator Joseph McCarthy <ul><li>Little known Republican senator from Wisconsin </li></ul><ul><li>He would have been defeated in bid for reelection in 1950 </li></ul><ul><li>He found a way to promote himself for reelection as an anti-Communist </li></ul><ul><li>On Feb. 12, 1950. McCarthy gave a campaign speech where he said he had a list of 205 people in the government that were communists </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>McCarthy was able to get reelected and became an active committee member for HUAC (House Un-American Activities Committee) </li></ul><ul><li>Went after government leaders and movie stars (McCarthy made quite a name for himself in pursuit of supposed communists) </li></ul><ul><li>Main reason for his success was the Cold War </li></ul>
  5. 5. Anti-Communist Sentiment in American Society <ul><li>McCarthyism became a major part of our society in the 1950s </li></ul><ul><li>Many states went after Communists, put people in jail for long sentences if affiliated with Communists </li></ul><ul><li>On federal level, illegal to be a member of the Communist Party </li></ul><ul><li>Anti-Communists hysteria influenced American Education </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Textbooks pushed patriotism and preached anti-communism </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Un-American books were banned from libraries </li></ul></ul></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>Movie makers began to make films that promoted American ideals or were anti-Communist </li></ul><ul><li>This is the era that “under God” was added to the Pledge of Allegiance </li></ul>
  7. 7. The End of McCarthyism <ul><li>McCarthy, despite his popularity, proved very little and gradually people became wise to him </li></ul><ul><li>On televised hearings, McCarthy made a fool of himself, acting like a bully and even sounding like he was drunk </li></ul><ul><li>Eventually he was censured by the Senate and faded away, dying 3 years later </li></ul><ul><li>One of the ironies of all of this is that were very few actual Communists in the US </li></ul>

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