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Hitler in Jakarta

Ira Katznelson, 7 November 1991

Language and Power: Exploring Political Cultures in Indonesia 
by Benedict Anderson.
305 pp., $44.95, January 1991, 0 8014 9758 2
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... May 20 is marked each year in Indonesia as the Day of National Awakening. It commemorates the founding in 1908 of Budi Utomo, a nationalist organisation created by Javanese in their late teens and early twenties at the Western-type medical school in Batavia, colonial capital of the Netherlands Indies. These founders were drawn from a tiny protoélite, numbering just over a thousand, who had been educated at Dutch-language primary schools ...

Destiny v. Democracy

David Runciman: The New Deal, 25 April 2013

Fear Itself: The New Deal and the Origins of Our Time 
by Ira Katznelson.
Norton, 706 pp., £22, April 2013, 978 0 87140 450 3
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... state-sanctioned murder was treated as an unpleasant necessity rather than a public festival. As Ira Katznelson records, in November 1933, more than a year after FDR’s election, Lloyd Warner was burned alive before a cheering crowd of ten thousand in Princess Anne, Maryland, after an attempt to hang him had failed. Nothing so ghastly was permitted on ...

I want to love it

Susan Pedersen: What on earth was he doing?, 18 April 2019

Eric Hobsbawm: A Life in History 
by Richard J. Evans.
Little, Brown, 800 pp., £35, February 2019, 978 1 4087 0741 8
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... Mozart’s tear-jerker ‘Soave sia il vento’, the ‘Internationale’ – and wanted Ira Katznelson, who had arranged for his long post-Birkbeck teaching stint at the New School, to say Kaddish. The left establishment assembled, and his daughter placed a copy of the most recent issue of the LRB on his casket. When I read that, I very nearly ...

Inside Every Foreigner

Jackson Lears: America Intervenes, 21 February 2019

Franklin D. Roosevelt: A Political Life 
by Robert M. Dallek..
Allen Lane, 692 pp., £30, November 2017, 978 0 241 31584 2
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... of government job programmes. The New Deal’s most flagrant limitation was racial. The historian Ira Katznelson aptly entitled his study of the 1930s and 1940s When Affirmative Action Was White. Roosevelt depended heavily on Democratic support in Congress from the Jim Crow South. Much New Deal largesse was administered at the state level by lily-white ...

While Statues Sleep

Thomas Laqueur, 18 June 2020

Learning from the Germans: Confronting Race and the Memory of Evil 
by Susan Neiman.
Allen Lane, 415 pp., £20, August 2019, 978 0 241 26286 3
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... for that matter, the rest of the country. In these years ‘affirmative action was white,’ as Ira Katznelson put it. Social security payments weren’t given to domestic servants – largely black – or agricultural workers, who in the South were almost all black. The Federal Housing Administration allowed banks to refuse mortgages to people who ...

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