978-1-56584-596-1 / 9781565845961

The Cultural Cold War: The CIA and the World of Arts and Letters


Publisher:New Press, The



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About the book:

The "rivetingly told" (Times Literary Supplement) story of the CIA's Cold War cultural operations, short-listed for the Guardian First Book Award. In The Cultural Cold War, Frances Stonor Saunders presents for the first time the shocking evidence that the CIA infiltrated every niche of the cultural sphere during the postwar years. In a "hammer-blow of a book" (The Spectator, London) drawing together recently declassified documents and exclusive interviews, the author narrates the extraordinary story of a secret campaign in which some of the most vocal exponents of intellectual freedom in the West were instruments of America's secret service. The CIA's front organizations and the philanthropic foundations that channeled its money organized conferences, founded magazines, ran congresses, mounted exhibitions, arranged concerts, and flew symphony orchestras around the world. Many of the period's foremost intellectuals, artists, and philanthropists appear in the book: Isaiah Berlin, Clement Greenberg, Sidney Hook, Arthur Koestler, Irving Kristol, Robert Lowell, Henry Luce, Andr Malraux, Mary McCarthy, Reinhold Neibuhr, George Orwell, Jackson Pollock, Nelson Rockefeller, Bertrand Russell, Jean-Paul Sartre, Arthur Schlesinger, Jr., and Stephen Spender, among others. While many were unwitting participants in the CIA's cultural operation, others were willing collaborators. In this expose of covert patronage unprecedented in modern history, recently short-listed for the Guardian First Book Award, Saunders has created "a crucial story" (The Times, London) that is "quite unputdownable" (Literary Review).

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