Home

Why did images of white, nuclear families dominate television in the 1950s? Why has it taken nearly 70 years for images of a diverse America—featuring people of color, immigrants, women as independent social beings—to appear on prime time television?  Challenging the longstanding belief that what appeared on television screens in the 1950s and after resulted from some social consensus, The Broadcast 41 addresses these and other questions by telling two intersecting stories. The first story documents the heterogeneous perspectives of a generation of progressive women who had been…

I just stumbled across this article, which combines three wonderful items: Langston Hughes, the Chicago Defender, and ghosts. Hughes was a poet and writer who was blacklisted in the 1950s and the subject of much government and anti-communist organization concern because of his powerful voice and the respect he commanded. The Chicago Defender was one of the most important African American newspapers. Founded in 1905, its coverage of police violence, civil rights, entertainment, everyday life, and so much more is an important…

In a recent essay, John Pilger recalls the inspiring opposition of journalists, intellectuals and writers to rising waves of fascism, authoritarianism, repression, and censorship in the US and internationally during the 1930s. Today, in contrast, he writes, what we have are "silences filled with a consensus of propaganda that contaminates almost everything we read, see and hear." 

Alongside that more literary opposition in the 1930s ran a current of leftwing…