Google Answers Logo
View Question
Q: Cultural left's argument over US participation in World War II ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   2 Comments )
Subject: Cultural left's argument over US participation in World War II
Category: Arts and Entertainment
Asked by: margaretmorgan-ga
List Price: $60.00
Posted: 17 Feb 2005 17:51 PST
Expires: 19 Mar 2005 17:51 PST
Question ID: 476286
Place of Publication, Page Reference and Title of essay written by
Dwight McDonald, which appears in Partisan Review, Spring 1939
regarding US entry into World War II. The essay contains the quote
that WWII was about 'political and cultural submission to the ruling
class at home'

Request for Question Clarification by scriptor-ga on 17 Feb 2005 18:09 PST
Dear margaretmorgan,

Are you sure that the article appeared in a 1939 spring issue? World
War II began only on 1 September of that year, when Germany invaded
Poland. How could Dwight MacDonald write about possible U.S.
participation in a war that had not even started yet then? This is a
bit confusing; maybe it was a later issue of that magazin?

Subject: Re: Cultural left's argument over US participation in World War II
Answered By: pafalafa-ga on 17 Feb 2005 19:00 PST
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
The article in question was:

D[wight] M[acDonald], 'This Quarter ? War and the Intellectuals: Act
Two', Partisan Review, Spring 1939, vol. VI, no. 3, pp. 3-20.

The quote you referenced was cited in a book:

Pollock and after: The Critical Debate 
by Francis Frascina
Harper & Row, 1985 

which I located by searching for the quote at

The actual passage in the Frascina book is as follows:

In the editorial of the Spring 1939 issue of Partisan Review titled
'War and the Intellectuals: Act Two', Dwight MacDonald appealed to
intellectuals to resist the drive towards a second war. Spuriously
presented as a crusade for democracy the war was, in fact, a war in
the interests of the capitalist ruling class and itself a product of
capitalism. MacDonald insisted that support for the war under the
banner of opposition to fascism abroad meant 'political and cultural
submission to the ruling class at home'. He restated opposition to the
Stalinist policy of a united front against European fascism. American
intellectuals seemed to have forgotten that there was a genuine
alternative to capitalism and its wars ? social revolution.

I trust this answer fully meets your needs.  But before rating this
answer, please let me know if there's anything else I can do for you. 
Just post a Request for Clarification, and I'm at your service.

All the best,

margaretmorgan-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $10.00
Fantastic. Thanks for your answer -- which as soon as I had it -- and
that was very soon -- I could ascertain in my own copy of said book.

Subject: Re: Cultural left's argument over US participation in World War II
From: pafalafa-ga on 18 Feb 2005 04:42 PST
Thanks so much for the stars, tip and kind words...all very much appreciated.

Subject: Re: Cultural left's argument over US participation in World War II
From: synapse666b-ga on 19 Feb 2005 09:06 PST
I just finished reading Pierre van Paassen's memoir "Days of Our
Years" published in 1939.  Van Paassen was an international on-site
journalist and eyewitness to the events leading up to WWII.  He has
several amazing chapters discussing/annotating the deliberate rabid
capitalism and brutal intrigues of the gathered industrialists  and
resource cartels, moneyed interests, and ethnocentric nationalists all
plotting together prior to the war - and even through the first years
of the war.  He addresses the capitalist's first embracing of the
fascists (i.e. the corperate state) to destroy the nascent
socialist/communist movement that threatened the vast land wealth of
the aristocracy, and then their slow understanding that Fascism was a
threat (in fact many prominant French and English wanted fascism in
their countries). And by the way, yes, the pope and the vatican were
ardent supporters of fascism in that the church held vast tracts of
land that the starving and oppressed peasants were beginning to take
in communal groups for their own (the threat of redistribution of
wealth always brings out the worst in capitalists - and somehow the
worse it gets the more money they all make).  So yes, those who were
listening new that there was certainly a roughly choreographed war
sorry to be rambling, just finished this powerful memoir - 

regards - synapse666b

Important Disclaimer: Answers and comments provided on Google Answers are general information, and are not intended to substitute for informed professional medical, psychiatric, psychological, tax, legal, investment, accounting, or other professional advice. Google does not endorse, and expressly disclaims liability for any product, manufacturer, distributor, service or service provider mentioned or any opinion expressed in answers or comments. Please read carefully the Google Answers Terms of Service.

If you feel that you have found inappropriate content, please let us know by emailing us at with the question ID listed above. Thank you.
Search Google Answers for
Google Answers  

Google Home - Answers FAQ - Terms of Service - Privacy Policy