History Professor Discusses New Book at University Bookstore

Posted: March 17, 2000 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

Arthur Herman, visiting associate professor in History and Art History, discusses and signs copies of his latest book, Joseph McCarthy: Reexamining the Life and Legacy of America’s Most Hated Senator (Free Press, 1999), at the University Bookstore in the Johnson Center on Monday, March 20, at 8 p.m. The book has been praised as a fresh and challenging look at one of the most reviled and controversial American political figures of the 20th century.

Herman is the coordinator of the Western Civilization Program at the Smithsonian Institution and has received grants from the Fulbright, Mellon, and Charlotte W. Newcombe Foundations. His first book, The Idea of the Decline in Western History (Free Press, 1997), was praised by the Washington Post as “powerful and persuasive” and by the Washington Times as “a sober, scholarly book.” His articles have appeared in the Journal of Modern History, the Sixteenth Century Journal, the Journal of History of Ideas, and many other journals.

Joseph McCarthy reveals illuminating facts and details about McCarthy’s anti-Communism crusade. Using newly declassified archival sources, Herman explains the truth behind many of the investigations initiated by McCarthy and debunks some of the myths surrounding America’s so-called “Red Scare” of the 1950s. Herman also examines McCarthy’s own self-destructive tendencies and notorious behavioral traits, such as his alcoholism, compulsive gambling, and manic depression. “Today [McCarthy] exists in most people’s imagination solely as an established icon of evil,” Herman writes. “In retrospect, McCarthy’s disgrace and obloquy has come at a certain price to historical truth.”

Copies of the book will be available for sale at the bookstore. For more information on the event, call the bookstore at x32666.

Write to at