The Rise and Fall of the People's Century: Henry A. Wallace and American Liberalism, 1941-1948

By Norman D. Markowitz | Go to book overview

2
Keeper of the Flame

. . . there must be genuine democracy in approaching problems of the human soul and access to raw materials.

Henry A. Wallace to William F. Riley September 30, 1941*

World War II ended the depression in America, but the ending was hardly happy at the outset. When Henry Wallace entered the Vice Presidency in January, 1941, German and Japanese domination of most of Europe and Asia offered the grim prospect of a barbaric new order committed to a world of force without law and without justice. The war crisis led Roosevelt to give Wallace powers and responsibilities well beyond the usual ceremonial role of the Vice President -- new authority as chairman of the Board of Economic Warfare, member of the War Production Board and other important agencies, and the President's special emissary on missions to Latin America and China.

Yet, Wallace's most important wartime role was to serve as the leading spokesman for a revived and confident socialliberal movement. Opposed to both Adolf Hitler's New Order and Henry Luce's American Century, social liberals developed

-36-

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The Rise and Fall of the People's Century: Henry A. Wallace and American Liberalism, 1941-1948
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Preface ix
  • 1 - Prelude to the People's Century 1
  • Notes 31
  • 2 - Keeper of the Flame 36
  • Notes 74
  • 3 - The Missouri Compromise of 1944 81
  • Notes 117
  • 4 - Reconversion and Reaction 124
  • Notes 155
  • 5 - From Stettin in the Baltic 160
  • Notes 193
  • 6 - A Crisis of the American Spirit 200
  • Notes 226
  • 7 - Manifest Destiny, 1947: the Triumph of Containment 231
  • Notes 260
  • 8 - The Last Battle 266
  • Notes 297
  • 9 - The Twenty-First Century 304
  • Notes 328
  • Appendix: the Mysticism Legend 333
  • Notes 341
  • Select Bibliographical Essay 343
  • Index 361
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