Deadly Farce: Harvey Matusow and the Informer System in the McCarthy Era
Robert M. LichtmanISBN: 0252028864;
Book DescriptionNo issue so possessed the nation in the first half of the 1950s as alleged Communist subversion in the United States. Deadly Farce presents Harvey Matusow, a young Bronx "wise guy" who became a Communist Party member, an undercover FBI informer inside the Party, and then a leading witness for the government during the McCarthy era--until he recanted his testimony. His story illuminates a disturbing time in American history, one with renewed relevance today. Matusow was easily the most flamboyant of the "professional" ex-Communists, a celebrity informer who considered himself "booked" by Congressional committees not just to testify, but to entertain. He testified that Communists fostered loose sex, taught politicized Mother Goose rhymes to small children, and tried to infiltrate the Boy Scouts. He also named more than 200 people as Communists and was a prosecution witness in major criminal cases. Robert M. Lichtman and Ronald D. Cohen draw on FBI...
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