Earl Browder: the failure of American communism
Earl Browder, the preeminent 20th-century Communist party leader in the United States, steered the CPUSA through the critical years of the Great Depression and World War II. A Kansas native and veteran of numerous radical movements, he was peculiarly fitted by circumstance and temperament to head the cause during its heyday. Serving as a bridge between American Communism’s secret and public worlds, Browder did more than anyone to attempt to explain the Soviet Union’s shifting policies to the American people in a way that would serve the interests of the CPUSA. A proud and loyal follower of Joseph Stalin, Browder nevertheless sought to move the party into the U.S. political mainstream. He used his knowledge of domestic politics to persuade the Communist International to modify Popular Front (1935-1939) tactics for the United States. Despite his rise in the hierarchy, he possessed an independent streak that ultimately proved his undoing. Imprisonment as he neared age 50 left permanent psychological damage. After being released with the approval of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Browder lost his perspective and began entertaining delusions of grandeur about his status in American politics and in the world Communist movement. Still, he could never quite bring legitimacy to the CPUSA because he lacked the vision and moral courage to separate himself totally from the Soviet Union. Ryan concludes that Browder was not so much insincere as deluded. His failure contributed to the demise of the popularity of the Communist party in the United States. In preparation for this book, the author consulted the Browder Papers at Syracuse University and U.S. Government documents, particularly the F.B.I. files. In addition, he traveled to Russia for research in the Soviet Archives when recently opened to Western scholars, including the records of the former Communist International and a collection of American Communist party files, 1919-1944, shipped secretly to Moscow long ago. Indeed, until 1992, the existence of the CPUSA collection was only rumored.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
From Field to Office 18911930
No More Traditions Chain Shall Bind Us 19301933
15 other sections not shown
Other editions - View all
actions American Communism American Communist Anticommunism April attorney August began Bittelman Brow Browder speech cadres campaign capitalist Comintern Committee Communist party comrades Congress considered CPUSA CPUSA-Comintern Daily Worker Darcy December delo Democratic Front denounced Department Dimitrov displayed documents domestic Duclos Earl Browder Eugene Dennis Farmer-Labor fascist February federal foreign Foster Georgi Dimitrov Gil Green Haynes historian Hitler Hoover Jaffe January Jay Lovestone Joseph Joseph Stalin July June Klehr labor later leader leadership leftist Lovestone March Marxist ment Moscow movement National Nazi Nazi-Soviet pact never nist November October opis 72 organization party's passport Polburo political Popular Front president Press prison proletarian radical Raissa Republican Robert Minor role Roosevelt Russian Ryan September social Socialist sought Soviet Stalin Starobin TD/Browder Teheran thousand tion tional Trotskyists union United USSR victory votes Weinstone William World York