Culture, Politics, and McCarthyism
By Irving Louis Horowitz
This article appeared in the Spring 1996 issue of The Independent Review.
The 1950s are often portrayed as an era of conformity and cultural stagnation, but this cliché has little basis in fact. Although McCarthyism may have been a low point in recent American political culture, it contributed in subtle ways to the eras significant but often under-appreciated innovations in music, literature, and drama.