John Reed: The Making of a Revolutionary

By Granville Hicks; John Stuart | Go to book overview

XVII
AMERICA, 1918

ON APRIL 28, 1918, exactly five years after his arrest in Paterson, John Reed reached what the Times, with military secretiveness, called in its dispatch "an Atlantic port." The port was, of course, New York. Being under indictment in the Masses case, he was met by federal agents, who held him on board for more than eight hours, while they searched his baggage and clothes. His papers were seized, but he was finally liberated after Morris Hillquit had promised that he would be at the Federal Building the next morning. Louise Bryant had waited for him from the time the boat docked, early in the morning, and together they went in a cab to the Brevoort. The next day he appeared before Judge Rufus E. Foster, with Dudley Field Malone as his counsel, and bail was fixed at $2000.

It was a clear warning to John Reed that wartime America was no place for the writing of poetry; there were other things that had to be done first. A year of war had successfully infected the majority of the American people with hysteria. Day after day they had read in the papers that Germans were beasts who must be destroyed. Sunday after Sunday ministers of the gospel had preached the crusade. Moving pictures and plays portrayed the frightfulness of the enemy and the heroic idealism of the American soldier, and between the acts four-minute men converted sentiment into cash. Education almost ceased that children might listen to tales of Hun atrocities or participate in liberty loan, Red Cross, war saving stamp, or Y.M.C.A. campaigns.

It was no wonder that the slightest opposition to war roused

-303-

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John Reed: The Making of a Revolutionary
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • I- Boyhood in Portland 1
  • II- Release 16
  • III- "Pain of Growing, Ecstasy of Unfolding" 24
  • IV- To See the World 51
  • V- Proud New York 64
  • VI- Profession: Poet 91
  • VII- The Romantic Revolution 109
  • VIII- Between Wars 136
  • IX- This is Not Our War 148
  • X- Manhattan Revisited 170
  • XI- Eastern Front 183
  • XII- Breathing Spell 204
  • XIII- Almost Thirty 228
  • XIV- Passage to Russia 249
  • XV- The World Shakes 268
  • XVI- Revolutionary and Poet 282
  • XVII- America, 1918 303
  • XVII- Spokesman of the Soviets 321
  • XIX- Discipline 342
  • XX- Revolutionary's Return 365
  • XXI- By the Kremlin Wall 387
  • Acknowledgments 403
  • Appendix A- Notes 407
  • Appendix B- Bibliography 425
  • Index 437
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