Cultural Studies

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By Benjamin L. Alpers

Concentrating on portrayals of Mussolini's Italy, Hitler's Germany, and Stalin's Russia in U.S. movies, journal and newspaper articles, books, performs, speeches, and different texts, Benjamin Alpers lines altering American understandings of dictatorship from the overdue Nineteen Twenties throughout the early years of the chilly struggle.
During the early Thirties, such a lot Americans' belief of dictatorship fascinated by the dictator. no matter if seen as heroic or awful, the dictator used to be represented as a determine of serious, masculine strength and effectiveness. because the nice melancholy gripped the USA, a couple of people--including conservative individuals of the clicking and a few Hollywood filmmakers--even dared to indicate that dictatorship should be the reply to America's social difficulties.
In the overdue Thirties, American motives of dictatorship shifted concentration from person leaders to the pursuits that empowered them. Totalitarianism turned the picture opposed to which a view of democracy emphasizing tolerance and pluralism and disparaging mass hobbies built. First used to explain dictatorships of either correct and left, the time period "totalitarianism" fell out of use upon the U.S. access into global battle II. With the war's finish and the cave in of the U.S.-Soviet alliance, despite the fact that, issues approximately totalitarianism lay the root for the rising chilly battle.

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Additional resources for Dictators, Democracy, and American Public Culture: Envisioning the Totalitarian Enemy, 1920s-1950s

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Mayer previewed the film in early March, he interpreted it, correctly, as an attack on Republican presidents Harding and Hoover and was furious. Gabriel was sent back to the Hays Office, which demanded more changes. 31 When  finally released Gabriel in April, it was a hit at the box office but encountered mixed reviews. In fact, it was one of the six most popular movies that month. ’’ No reviewer ignored its political content and possible political effect. By and large, the more highbrow liberal journals, such as the Nation and Commonweal, expressed fearful disapproval of the film’s message.

Visitors, it was nearly impossible to obtain an interview with him. When Eugene Lyons, after living for some time in Moscow as a foreign correspondent, finally had his longpromised conversation with the Soviet ruler in , he received congratulatory telegrams literally from around the world. 13 Often stiff in public and by all accounts an uninspiring orator, Stalin did not command crowds the way that Mussolini, and later Hitler, did. On the other hand, Stalin, like Mussolini before him, developed a reputation as someone who would stop at nothing to achieve what he set out to do.

He outranks all other Russian statesmen in courage, will power, maneuvering talents, political organizing ability and primitive tenacity. ’’ Fischer’s politics, however, led him to distrust the cult of personality developing around the Soviet leader. He suggested that Stalin might end it in good dictatorial fashion: A good friend might also advise Stalin to put a stop to the orgy of personal glorification of Stalin which has been permitted to sweep the country. This is Stalin’s achilles heel. From being the modest retiring leader whom few saw or heard—the silent power behind the ‘‘throne’’—he has in recent months stepped forth into the brightest limelight and seems to enjoy it.

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