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Article
Publication date: 15 February 2016

Stefan Schwarzkopf

This paper aims to chart the influence of McCarthyism and of FBI surveillance practices on a number of prominent American social scientists, market researchers, opinion…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to chart the influence of McCarthyism and of FBI surveillance practices on a number of prominent American social scientists, market researchers, opinion pollsters and survey research practitioners during the post-war years. Hitherto disparate sets of historical evidence on how Red Scare tactics influenced social researchers and marketing scientists are brought together and updated with evidence from original archival research.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper draws on the existing secondary literature on how social research practitioners and social scientists reacted to the unusually high pressures on academic freedom during the McCarthy era. It supplements this review with evidence obtained from archival research, including declassified FBI files. The focus of this paper is set on prominent individuals, mainly Bernard Berelson, Samuel Stouffer, Hadley Cantril, Robert S. Lynd, Paul F. Lazarsfeld, Herta Herzog, Ernest Dichter, but also the Frankfurt School in exile.

Findings

Although some of the historiography presents American social scientists and practitioners in the marketing research sector as victims of McCarthyism and FBI surveillance, it can also be shown that virtually all individuals in focus here also developed strategies of accommodation, compromise and even opportunism to benefit from the climate of suspicion brought about by the prevailing anti-Communism.

Social implications

Anyone interested in questions about the morality of marketing, market research and opinion polling as part of the social sciences practiced in vivo will need to pay attention to the way these social-scientific practices became tarnished by the way prominent researchers accommodated and at times even abetted McCarthyism.

Originality/value

Against the view of social scientists as harassed academic minority, evidence is presented in this paper which shows American social scientists who researched market-related phenomena, like media, voters choices and consumer behaviour, in a different light. Most importantly, this paper for the first time presents archival evidence on the scale of Paul F. Lazarsfeld’s surveillance by the FBI.

Details

Journal of Historical Research in Marketing, vol. 8 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-750X

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Book part
Publication date: 20 September 2014

Patrick Rafail

Scholarship on the state control of social movements has predominately focused on overt repression, resulting in comparatively less attention to more covert forms of…

Abstract

Scholarship on the state control of social movements has predominately focused on overt repression, resulting in comparatively less attention to more covert forms of control. Researchers have suggested that government surveillance of social movement organizations (SMOs) has become increasingly widespread and routinized in the post-September 11, 2001 era, but this hypothesis has remained untested. Since contemporary surveillance is grounded in a logic of information gathering that has diffused across law enforcement agencies since the September 11 attacks, government actors now cast a wide net and monitor a large variety of groups. This study shows that a result, traditional factors predicting surveillance, such as contentious behavior, have less explanatory power. Using a database of 409 SMOs active in Philadelphia between January 1996 and October 2009, the research asked who and why particular groups are monitored by the Pennsylvania Office of Homeland Security (PA-OHS) between November 2009 and September 2010. Bayesian logistic regression analysis is used to examine the variables predicting surveillance. Findings show that 23% of the SMOs in the sample were targets of surveillance. Organizational ideology was the strongest predictor and there was little evidence that history of contentious protests or previous conflict with the police influenced coming under surveillance. However, groups with less visibility in traditional media sources were more likely to be monitored.

Details

Intersectionality and Social Change
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-105-3

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Book part
Publication date: 21 August 2015

Susan Archer Mann

This chapter focuses on how the repression of political ideologies can silence feminist voices. It examines how writings by women working with the U.S. Communist Party in…

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter focuses on how the repression of political ideologies can silence feminist voices. It examines how writings by women working with the U.S. Communist Party in the 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, and early 1960s have been overlooked even though they presaged important linchpins of U.S. second-wave feminist thought.

Methodology/approach

This study is based on historical and archival research.

Findings

Decades before the rise of second-wave feminism, women in the CPUSA had: (1) produced a political economy of domestic labor; (2) employed an intersectional analysis of the interlocking oppressions of race, gender, class, and nation; and (3) called for a global feminist analysis that linked these multiple oppressions to colonialism and imperialism.

Social implications

This study illustrates the costs of political repression and how the canon of feminist thought can be enhanced by resuscitating subjugated knowledges.

Originality/value

Too little attention has focused on the silencing of women because of their political ideologies. This chapter addresses this lacuna in feminist studies and calls into question the oft-repeated notion that the periods between the waves of U.S. feminism were times of movement stagnation. It shows how theory construction can flourish even when feminist activism wanes.

Details

At the Center: Feminism, Social Science and Knowledge
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-078-4

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 1972

Albert Cherns

The topic of this article is the contribution of the behavioural sciences to personnel management. I must confess, however, to a distaste for the term ‘behavioural…

Abstract

The topic of this article is the contribution of the behavioural sciences to personnel management. I must confess, however, to a distaste for the term ‘behavioural science’ for two reasons. To begin with, it originated as a paraphrase for ‘social science’ during the McCarthy era in the United States. It was then feared that Congressional backwoodsmen would veto any programme or project labelled ‘social science’ because of their inability to distinguish it from ‘socialism’ But the second reason is the more important. In the eyes of industry behavioural science has come to be identified with a particular set of packages and devices — the T‐group. Blake's Grid, job enrichment, to mention only the most prominent. So I shall use the term ‘social sciences’ and make it clear that I am discussing psychology and sociology, and to a lesser extent anthropology, but excluding ergonomics at one end of the spectrum and economics at the other. Political science is included, but best left to the author of the article on industrial relations and personnel management

Details

Personnel Review, vol. 1 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

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Article
Publication date: 1 December 1999

Evelyn Kerslake and Ann O’Brien

The film Storm Center was released in 1956, featuring Bette Davis as a librarian in small town America. The narrative is a parable of anti‐communism in the McCarthy era

Abstract

The film Storm Center was released in 1956, featuring Bette Davis as a librarian in small town America. The narrative is a parable of anti‐communism in the McCarthy era where the town council tries to remove a book on communism from the library. The librarian opposes this and is fired. The details and consequences provide a rich framework for a discursive approach to the text. A discursive approach is chosen because of the film’s extensive use of thematic oppositions around the central concern of censorship and freedom of information. A number of discourses are briefly explored including: femininity; the individual and the group; emotion and scientific rationalism. Concludes that qualitative work in library and information studies might benefit by considering the type of questions posed by discourse theory, as outlined here.

Details

Library Management, vol. 20 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-5124

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Article
Publication date: 11 July 2019

Christopher M. Hartt, Albert J. Mills and Jean Helms Mills

This paper aims to study the role of non-corporeal Actant theory in historical research through a case study of the trajectory of the New Deal as one of the foremost…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to study the role of non-corporeal Actant theory in historical research through a case study of the trajectory of the New Deal as one of the foremost institutions in the USA since its inception in the early 1930s.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors follow the trajectory of the New Deal through a focus on Vice President Henry A. Wallace. Drawing on ANTi-History, the authors view history as a powerful discourse for organizing understandings of the past and non-corporeal Actants as a key influence on making sense of (past) events.

Findings

The authors conclude that non-corporeal Actants influence the shaping of management and organization studies that serve paradoxically to obfuscate history and its relationship to the past.

Research limitations/implications

The authors drew on a series of published studies of Henry Wallace and archival material in the Roosevelt Library, but the study would benefit from an in-depth analysis of the Wallace archives.

Practical implications

The authors reveal the influences of non-corporeal Actants as a method for dealing with the past. The authors do this through the use of ANTi-History as a method of historical analysis.

Social implications

The past is an important source of understanding of the present and future; this innovative approach increases the potential to understand.

Originality/value

Decisions are often black boxes. Non-Corporeal Actants are a new tool with which to see the underlying inputs of choice.

Details

Journal of Management History, vol. 26 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1751-1348

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Book part
Publication date: 27 September 2014

Susan Burgess

How did gays in the military go from being characterized as dangerous perverts threatening to the state, to victims being persecuted by the state, to potential heroes…

Abstract

How did gays in the military go from being characterized as dangerous perverts threatening to the state, to victims being persecuted by the state, to potential heroes fighting on behalf of the state? What implications does this shift have for understanding the means by which the liberal state uses law to include the previously excluded? Offering a critical account of the inclusion of gays in the military, I argue that while the lifting of the ban can be seen as an important step in a classic civil rights narrative in which the liberal state gradually accommodates the excluded, pop culture allows us also to see state and minority group interest convergence as well as divergence, revealing the costs of inclusion.

Details

Special Issue: Law and the Liberal State
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-238-8

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Article
Publication date: 9 January 2017

Kristin S. Williams and Albert J. Mills

This paper aims to achieve four things: to build on recent discussion on the neglect of Frances Perkins’ contribution to the understandings of management and organization…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to achieve four things: to build on recent discussion on the neglect of Frances Perkins’ contribution to the understandings of management and organization (MOS); to surface selected insights by Perkins to reveal her potential as an important MOS scholar and practitioner; to explain some of the reasons for the neglect of Perkins, particularly by MOS scholars; and to interrogate the role of management history in the neglect of Perkins and her management and organizational insights.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper adopts a feminist post-structural lens through which the authors focus on major discourses (dominant interrelated practices and ideas) that influence how people come to define themselves, others and the character of a particular phenomenon (e.g. management history). To that end, the authors have undertaken Foucauldian discourse analysis, where they examine various sources that collectively work to present a dominant idea of a given set of practices (in this case, management and organization studies and associated histories of the field). In Foucauldian terms, these interrelated practices constitute an archive that consists of various selected materials (e.g. the Roosevelt Library and the Columbia University Oral History Collection) and, in this case, works on and by Francis Perkins. Thus, the authors analyzed various materials for their discursive value (viz. the extent to which they produced and reinforced a particular notion that excluded, neglected or ignored women from any privileged role in MOS and management history).

Findings

The findings are discursive, which means that the purpose is to disrupt current knowledge of MOS and management history by revealing how its practices as a field of study serve to leave certain people (i.e. Frances Perkins), influences (i.e. the impact of the “settlement ethos” on the New Deal), and social phenomena (i.e. the New Deal) out of account.

Originality/value

The objective is to ask for a rethink of the field definition of MOS and management history, to include broader levels of social endeavour (e.g. labour, social welfare and politics) and a range of hitherto neglected theorists, in particular Frances Perkins. Achievements in labour, industry and management of organizations, credited to the New Deal, are overlooked in MOS and management and organizational history. As Secretary of Labour, Perkins researched, lobbied and ushered in critical New Deal measures which transformed working environments for men, women and children with social welfare and labour policies that contributed to the understanding of managing and organizing in the modern world.

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Article
Publication date: 5 November 2020

Huimin Wang

This study asks how American institutions of higher education defended the principles of academic freedom (or intellectual autonomy) during the 1950s, even as they became…

Abstract

Purpose

This study asks how American institutions of higher education defended the principles of academic freedom (or intellectual autonomy) during the 1950s, even as they became increasingly dependent on the federal government's financial support, their eligibility for which required an oath of political loyalty under the terms of the National Defense Education Act of 1958. Universities whose students or professors resisted the oath faced a dilemma of institutional governance as well as intellectual integrity during the early years of the Cold War.

Design/methodology/approach

The study draws on documentary and archival sources, including the Congressional Record, the AAUP Bulletin, student pamphlets, newspapers and other publications of the US federal government, and on secondary sources.

Findings

The author finds that the US federal government began to invest heavily in higher education during the 1950s, but financial support was often accompanied by political oversight. Higher education institutions and their professors struggled to reconcile a sense of responsibility for national service with a desire for academic freedom. The findings show how the federal government treated institutions of higher education and dealt with the issue of academic freedom during the Cold War.

Originality/value

This study draws on a large pool of primary sources and previous research to offer new insights into an enduring ideological tension between academic freedom, public service and financial patronage.

Details

History of Education Review, vol. 50 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0819-8691

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 1987

Joseph V. Anderson

Somewhere along the line marketers got off track, especially at the academic level. At its core, the discipline is one of persuasion and influence. Yet the concept of…

Abstract

Somewhere along the line marketers got off track, especially at the academic level. At its core, the discipline is one of persuasion and influence. Yet the concept of power is conspicuously absent from most works on the nature of the marketing effort. That's a hit like trying to teach skydiving by ignoring gravity. Sometimes the results are also similar, in dealing with policy and strategy. The author provides a brief history of the demise of the power concept in marketing and offers a contextual argument for its inclusion as a central tenet of the discipline's conceptual core.

Details

Journal of Consumer Marketing, vol. 4 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0736-3761

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