Citizenship in Cold War America
288 pages, 6 x 9
Release Date:08 Jul 2014
$33.95 Back Order
Ships in 4-6 weeks.

Citizenship in Cold War America

The National Security State and the Possibilities of Dissent

University of Massachusetts Press
In the wake of 9/11, many Americans have deplored the dangers to liberty posed by a growing surveillance state. In this book, Andrea Friedman moves beyond the standard security/liberty dichotomy, weaving together often forgotten episodes of early Cold War history to reveal how the obsession with national security enabled dissent and fostered new imaginings of democracy.
The stories told here capture a wide-ranging debate about the workings of the national security state and the meaning of American citizenship. Some of the participants in this debate—women like war bride Ellen Knauff and Pentagon employee Annie Lee Moss—were able to make their own experiences compelling examples of the threats posed by the national security regime. Others, such as Ruth Reynolds and Lolita Lebrón, who advocated an end to American empire in Puerto Rico, or the psychiatrist Fredric Wertham, who sought to change the very definition of national security, were less successful. Together, however, they exposed the gap between democratic ideals and government policies.
Friedman traverses immigration law and loyalty boards, popular culture and theoretical treatises, U.S. court-rooms and Puerto Rican jails, to demonstrate how Cold War repression made visible in new ways the unevenness and limitations of American citizenship. Highlighting the ways that race and gender shaped critiques and defenses of the national security regime, she offers new insight into the contradictions of Cold War political culture.
This is a very polished, well-argued book that draws on a deep reservoir of archival materials. . . . The marvelous diversity of the case studies reinforces the main theme, which is that the Cold War consensus was not as solid as we have thought—or have been led to believe by previous scholarship. . . . Friedman's manuscript is a rumination on cold war citizenship, but it leads us to reconsider all moments in American history—well beyond her chronology here—in which citizenship was contested (and when wasn't it, frankly?). The episodes Friedman uncovers are absolutely crucial civics lessons that should enter the mainstream of our teaching on the postwar/cold war years.'—Laura McEnaney, author of Civil Defense Begins at Home
'In a marvelous conclusion, Friedman shows how the national security state of the 1950s compares to the post-9/11 world of today. Highly recommended.'—Choice
'This is an arresting book, grounded in truly formidable archival research, illuminated by well-chosen and diverting case studies, and written with deft and elegant use of the English language.'—American Historical Review
'Andrea Freidman has written a compelling and important book on citizenship and national identity during the Cold War. . . . She carefully unveils her argument with a series of well-selected case studies, each highlighting the multiple opportunities gained by activists within the political, legal, and cultural limits of the Cold War state. Written in lucid prose, Friedman's book is a well-constructed reexamination of this period, and is a must-read for scholars interested in the domestic Cold War.'—H-Net Reviews
'Throughout her book Friedman makes use of of a broad variety of primary sources gathering in numerous archives and libraries, and her knowledge of the secondary literature is impressive. Friedman provides a dense and detailed narrative.'—H-Soz-Kult
'Friedman concludes by making comparisons between the Cold War and the current war on terror. Even without the striking parallels in our contemporary moment, Friedman's book is an original, compelling, and illuminating addition to scholarship on Cold War America.'—Journal of American History
'Connects unexpected dots for a reinvigorated look at the Cold War. At first glance, Friedman's cast of characters may seem eclectic, her chapters 'only loosely related,' as she herself concedes. But one of the book's pleasures lies in discovery of the increasingly intricate connections that bind them together.'—Common Reader
'This book is highly recommended for both general and specialized readers and should be on eery reading list relating to civil liberties and contemporary American politics.'—Peace & Change: A Journal of Peace Research
'Citizenship in Cold War America offers new evidence that the alleged Cold War consensus was more wishful thinking than fact. . . . Friedman's work makes an indisputably valuable contribution to discussions about 'repression' and' consensus' in the postwar domestic Cold War.'—Register of the Kentucky Historical Society
'This work dedicated to the dialectic between the construction of the national security state, dissent, and the redefinition of citizenship in Cold War United States is certainly one of the most important books of history about policy across the Atlantic in recent years.'—Ricerche di storia politica
Andrea Friedman is associate professor of history and of women's, gender, and sexuality studies at Washington University in St. Louis.
Find what you’re looking for...

30% off UBC Press books through May 31 using code ANYWHERE30 at checkout!

Stay Informed

Receive the latest UBC Press news, including events, catalogues, and announcements.

Read past newsletters

Current Catalogue
Fall 2022 catalogue cover
Publishers Represented
UBC Press is the Canadian agent for several international publishers. Visit our Publishers Represented page to learn more.