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Epidemic of Fear   -  Discontinued

Epidemic of Fear

Item Number:
50 min.
Closed Caption:
A & E Entertainment
The heady glow of victory after World War II was not long-lived. America found itself a superpower in a divided and changing world China turned communist, Soviet armies gobbled up Eastern Europe and global nuclear war was a real threat. In this unsettled climate, the spectre of subversives in our midst boiled over into one of the darkest periods in the history of American politics. The House Un-American Activities Committee cut a slash and burn path through the lives and careers of some of the biggest names in Hollywood. THE 20th CENTURY revisits this turbulent era through revealing interviews with people who lived through it, including director Edward Dmytryk and screenwriter Ring Lardner, Jr., two members of the infamous "Hollywood Ten." Journalist David Halberstam and historians David Oshinsky and Joseph Persico offer their insight into how McCarthy and his cronies were able to carry out their vindictive and misguided campaign for so long, and examine its lingering effects. From the legitimate concern for National Security to the feeding frenzy of paranoia that resulted, this is an unflinching look at one of the low points of American political history.

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