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Jew and Not-Jew: Anti-Semitism and the Postwar Hollywood Social Problem Film

Page history last edited by Steven A Carr 10 years, 1 month ago

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"Jew and Not-Jew: Anti-Semitism and the Postwar Hollywood Social Problem Film."  The Wandering View: Modern Jewish Experiences in World Cinema.  Lawrence Baron, ed.  Waltham MA: Brandeis U P, forthcoming.

 

Versions of this paper were presented at the Ottawa Jewish Community Centre in Ottawa ON on M 22 Nov. 2010; and as "Anti-Semitism and the Postwar Hollywood Social Problem Film," Racial Politics and American Cinema, The Society for Cinema and Media Studies Conference, New Orleans LA, 13 Mar. 2011 (abstract).

 

Condemning Anti-Semitism: Psycho-Pathology or Nasty Personal Habit?

 

Both Crossfire (RKO, 1946) and Gentleman's Agreement (20th Century-Fox, 1947) have come to epitomize Hollywood's immediate post-war response to the Holocaust, which historians conventionally have characterized as not amounting to much of a response, either in tackling Nazism or in addressing the specifically Jewish dimension to the Nazi genocide.  As early as 1950, film critic Parker Tyler in his essay "Hollywood as a Universal Church" derided both of these titles for their attempt at social relevance.  Alluding only to a recent "social reality" that forces "an explicit recognition of the 'race prejudice' which, with respect to Jews, is so irrelevant in the social strongholds of professionalism," Tyler feigned surprise that "Hollywood should even seem to take sides in such large issues as social prejudices against Negroes and Jews" when "the desire to exploit the commercial opportunity" was simply too overwhelming for industry executives to beg off such subjects (orig. emphasis; 168).

 

Tyler's descriptions of both Gentleman's Agreement and Crossfire are worth quoting at length:

 

It was a "natural" for John Garfield to take the part of the race victim in Gentleman's Agreement.  Having been typed as rugged and sympathetic, rather than refined or handsome, his face was just right for that of the deserving underdog.  And who is the gentile hero who finally takes up Garfield's cause?  No one but Gregory Peck, correspondingly typed as handsome and noble, thus overwhelmingly ideal as the "Aryan" movie hero.  What happens?  Peck starts out by impersonating Jewishness (in name only) in order to write a series of feature articles for an important magazine.  Thus we do not see humiliated, eventually and somewhat ludicrously, a real Jew but a charade Jew.  Through this odd initiation rite, Hollywood spares the real Jew until, as Garfield, he has gentile Peck in there punching for him (orig. emphasis; 168).

 

gentlemansagreement.mov

 

Crossfire was similarly disingenuous in its treatment of anti-Semitism:

 

Here a candid-camera Jew is dealt death by an equally candid-camera Gentile.  Moral: those who passively and naively accept their Jewishness (that is, do nothing to "improve" accent or physiognomy or mannerism) are open to victimization.  Once again, the nominal Gentile is physically superior to the Jew with whom he is juxtaposed; by this "superiority" is indicated that social eligibility residing in a limited brand of personal attractiveness.  For the gentile fascist, the casting department wittily employed an ideal "G.I." physical type if ever there was one, Robert Ryan, who found it as possible to look villainous as Sam Levene, who played the Jew (169).

 

crossfire.mov

 

Despite Tyler's disdain for what he called "problem films" that "self-consciously" (and self-importantly) equate their "realism" with real life (169), like the films themselves, the essay never explicitly confronted the relevance of these films to the Holocaust.  In the essay as in the films, the European Holocaust eluded explicit acknowledgment, becoming part of what Tyler only evocatively identified as a larger recent "social reality."  The films were an easy mark, studiously avoiding outright reference to atrocities while explicitly countering American anti-Semitism.  Indeed, by setting these attitudes against postwar domestic backdrops of Washington DC in Crossfire and Manhattan and New England in Gentleman's Agreement, both films domesticated anti-Semitism for American audiences.  Curiously, though, commentary about the films echoed the films' starkly bifurcated response to the Holocaust: heightened consciousness of American anti-Semitism as a serious social problem; yet what Tyler himself called a "begging off" from realities like Nazi atrocities that newsreels had just a few years earlier so vividly depicted.

 

Furthermore, historical scholarship surprisingly has done relatively little to budge from this critique.  Just as quickly as the topic had entered the genre, anti-Semitism in the Hollywood social problem film disappeared from view.  Tyler made a convincing case that Hollywood treated anti-Semitism and racism interchangeably during this period, with Hollywood's "passing" and race-cycle films of the the late 1940s such as Home of the Brave (UA, 1949), Lost Boundaries (Film Classics, 1949), and Pinky (20th Century-Fox, 1949) as the logical continuation of these themes.  More recently, scholars have surmised that overt indictments of anti-Semitism and attendant worries over fascist tendencies by the late 1940s had become casualties of ideological assaults on Hollywood and industry executives' craven response to these assaults (Sayre).  Others, such as K. R. M. Short and Richard Maltby have argued that a crisis in postwar liberalism and its failure to realize its dream of democratic pluralism ultimately drove Hollywood to an "enthusiastic return to escapist fantasy" (Maltby 69; Short).  In Hollywood and Anti-Semitism, I similarly identified the shortcomings of Hollywood's treatment of anti-Semitism, arguing that both Gentleman's Agreement and Crossfire "condemned anti-Semitism, not because of its prevalence, but because of its aberration" and that such views were completely at odds with American democratic and assimilationist ideals (281).  I still believe these films functioned this way, pitting anti-Semitism as a distinctly un-American presence co-existing but at odds with core values of American democracy.

 

What this dominant critique of Hollywood failed to fully realize, however, was that the omission of explicit reference to the Holocaust in these films might still hold relevance to a postwar American understanding of the Holocaust.  This critique assumes that Hollywood's social problem films reacted to the Holocaust and Nazi atrocities through their consensual "pro-assimilation" view of anti-Semitism and racism.  There were indeed historical reasons why films like Crossfire and Gentleman's Agreement treated anti-Semitism this way, and why anti-Semitism, even in its domestic and to some extent domesticated variety, just as quickly seemed to vanish from the social problem genre.  Indeed, after Gentleman's Agreement, Hollywood did not make a mainstream film that as explicitly tackled both anti-Semitism and the Holocaust until The Young Lions (20th Century-Fox, 1958).

 

While it is hard not to see Crossfire and Gentleman's Agreement as meager and ephemeral in their reactions, and then nonetheless casualties of postwar anti-communism and an incipient American anti-Semitism, they did not operate exclusively in this manner.  This paper proposes a broader view incorporating how these films simultaneously bridged and recuperated pre-war and wartime discourses on Nazi anti-Semitism, in addition to reacting to new revelations of atrocity.  Recent work by Jennifer Langdon, for example, has argued that noir stylistics in Crossfire were "fundamentally rooted in the politics of the Popular Front" as a way to resist limitations imposed earlier on such raw narrative material by the Hollywood studio system, its style, and its self-imposed restrictions through its Production Code Administration (Langdon).  That these films might have developed and offered a continuation of representational strategies in response to Nazism and the Holocaust leave open the possibility of considering other pressures external to the industry, so that making films relevant to the Holocaust without directly depicting atrocity might have realized powerful benefits and incentives.  Discussions between Hollywood and those involved in postwar reconstruction of Europe, for example, typically stressed the need for films to help aid efforts at German re-education.  "The films... listed for use in Germany are entirely insufficient," General Robert A. McClure told a group of Hollywood executives at a meeting in occupied Germany on 4 July 1945.  "What can you gentleman do to help us in our main job of winning the peace" (United States, n. pag.)?  As one industry representative in Germany observed a few years later, so-called message pictures made by Hollywood were particularly unpopular in occupied Germany (qtd. in Segrave 171).  Eager to cooperate with postwar reconstruction efforts and tap new audiences, the film industry saw powerful incentives to favor making certain kinds of films over others, even if their actual efforts were not always successful or worked at cross purposes with various other interests.

 

In terms of what Crossfire and Gentleman's Agreement were able to accomplish, then, each addressed anti-Semitism within the constraints of the Hollywood social problem genre, explicitly referencing American anti-Semitism while only incidentally referencing the Holocaust.  Furthermore, each did so quite differently, with Crossfire depicting anti-Semitism as a psycho-pathological aberration, and Gentleman's Agreement depicting it as a nasty personal habit tolerated in polite society, but with corrosive consequences for democratic ideals.  While explicit reference to the Holocaust remained noticeably absent from these films, that absence is key to understanding the logic of a broad-based social consensus that emerged between Hollywood and the federal government: the injustice of anti-Semitism was that it singled out everyday people who just happened to be Jewish; and that American-style democracy upheld universal ideals that not only minimized religious, ethnic, or racial differences; but stubbornly denied those differences existed in the face of a normative, comprehensive national identity.

 

Whether psycho-pathological aberration or nasty personal habit, the consensus view of anti-Semitism embedded within both films fit the formula of the social problem film.  As Roffman and Purdy have argued, the Hollywood social problem film meant to

 

arouse indignation over some facet of contemporary life, carefully qualifying criticism so that it can in the end be reduced to simple causes, to a villain whose removal rectified the situation.  Allusions to the genuine concerns of the audience play up antisocial feelings only to exorcise them on safe targets contained within a dramatic rather than a social context (305).

 

Key to the resolution of the "problem" in Crossfire and Gentleman's Agreement, then, was the displacement and projection of anti-Semitism upon identifiable villains, such as a serial killer; or less viscerally, upon narrow-minded and petty individuals incapable of seeing the collective harm they inflicted upon the democratic polity.  Most striking, though, is that even though both films were about anti-Semitism, neither offered a Jewish protagonist.  From a dramatic standpoint, this was their key characteristic: their narratives were not about what it is like to be Jewish and encounter anti-Semitism, but what it is like to be not Jewish and encounter this phenomenon.

 

The Social Problem Genre and Roosevelt's Four Freedoms

Being "not Jewish" in both Crossfire and Gentleman's Agreement bridged a powerful, negotiated consensus where the Hollywood social problem genre could neatly align with President Rooosevelt's Four Freedoms.  These Freedoms, as articulated in the 6 January 1941 State of the Union address, presented a distinctly American vision of the modern world meant for wartime and postwar cultural export: freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from want, and freedom from fear.  As a guiding set of principles in determining how Hollywood could better support the Roosevelt war effort, the Four Freedoms asserted the positive aspects of the American way of life, rather than demonize the enemy.

 

Not just a repression of Nazi anti-Semitism, being "not Jewish" included a kind of wish fulfillment for what American democracy warts and all could offer the rest of a world facing postwar reconstruction.  In a draft memo from August 1944 attempting to outline how government might offer better guidance to the film industry, the Office of War Information outlined the kinds of themes Hollywood should attempt.  When dealing with social problems, the memo advised that

 

Films dealing with the American domestic scene run the risk of presenting America in an unflattering light to foreign audiences unless the treatment maintains a balance on the positive rather than the negative side.  Thus, a film . . . should show that men of goodwill are actually in the majority, even though it is only a passive majority until aroused.  In other words, good should not only triumph over evil but the result should be brought about through wilful [sic] and purposeful action rather than through fortuitous circumstances.  The difficulties arising from these films are largely due to the problem or theme, but this principle should underlie the treatment of all films dealing with the seamy side of American life.  Showing our problems frankly and objectively reflects very well upon American freedom of discussion, but we must remember that movies are made for a mass audience not necessarily given to such reflection and analysis.  For this reason, the overall impact of a film should be one in which problems are shown with relation to the measure being taken to adjust them (Office of War Information 7-8).

 

With such guidance, the lack of explicit reference to the Holocaust did not necessarily stymie how actual audiences might have imagined these films in relation to Nazi anti-Semitism.  Rather, as the passage above indicates, the emergent consensus between government and Hollywood stressed the importance of winning the peace through promoting a realistic but ultimately positive view of America for mass consumption.

 

The narratives for both Crossfire and Gentleman's Agreement fit within this paradigm, and reflected the outcome of this consensual vision of America.  In Crossfire, the negative aspect of isolated pathological anti-Semitism gets outweighed by the civilian and military status quo "aroused" through "purposeful" investigation the ugly motivation for what slowly emerges as a hate crime.  When the police shoot the murderer at the end of the film, diligent good has triumphed over irrational evil.  Gentleman's Agreement functioned as a more complicated narrative, but it still fit the same basic formula.  An investigative reporter pretends to be Jewish in order to write an exposé on American anti-Semitism, and finds it completely endemic to polite society, including the workplace, schools, hotels, and even in his personal relationships.  While the film suggested that anti-Semitism is more prevalent than not, there are enough men and women "of goodwill" in the film to confront what the film portrays more as a tolerated than as a pathological evil.  The most interesting aspect of Gentleman's Agreement, though, is in how the reporter methodically rooted out instances of polite anti-Semitism in society, similar to how the homicide detective in Crossfire amassed evidence of a hate crime.  By the time the reporter in Gentleman's Agreement wrote his story, and has his mother approvingly read a passage from it, the film no longer needed to show a heretofore "passive majority" aroused.  His story had marshaled the preponderance of American history against an insidious personal habit.  Read by his mother, the passage implicitly invoked Nazism through both its metaphor of a fruit tree, and its invocation of the founding fathers as framed by Roosevelt's Four Freedoms:

 

gentlemansagreement_iwishyourfather.mov | Driving away from the inn, I knew all about every man or women had been told the job was filled when it wasn't.  Every youngster who had ever been turned down by a college or a summer camp.  I knew the rage that pitches through you when you see your own child shaken and dazed.  From that moment, I saw an unending attack by adults on kids of seven and eight and ten and twelve.  On adolescent boys and girls trying to get a job or an education or into medical school.  I knew that they had somehow had known it too.  They, those patient stubborn men who argued and wrote and fought and came up with the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.  They knew that the tree is known by its fruit, and that injustice corrupts a tree.  That its fruit withers and shrivels and falls at last to that dark ground of history, where other great hopes have rotted and died.  Where equality and freedom remain still the only choice for wholeness and soundness in a man or in a nation.

 

Upon finishing her reading of the passage, the mother solidified this consensual view of American history at a deeply personal level, observing that the recently deceased father "would have liked to have you say that, Phil."

 

Anti-Semitism and Being Not-Jewish

Neither Crossfire nor Gentleman's Agreement were simply about anti-Semitism, but rather were about encountering anti-Semitism from the perspective of not being Jewish.  Framing anti-Semitism in this way as a social problem was key to the consensual view of anti-Semitism as unjustly singling out individuals who just happened to be Jewish.  A pivotal scene from Gentleman's Agreement underscored this ideology.  In order to write his exposé on anti-Semitism, journalist Schuyler "Phil" Green realized that he could pose as being Jewish as he gazed into a bedroom mirror, effectively erasing the difference between him and his best friend Dave Goldman, who did happen to be Jewish:

 

 gentlemansagreement_iwasjewishfor6months.mov Dark hair, dark eyes, sure, so has Dave.  So have a lot of guys who aren't Jewish.  No accent, no mannerisms, neither has Dave.  Name: Phil Green.  Skip the Schuyler.  It might be anything: Phil Green!  Ma, it's a cinch!

 

When Phil asked his mother not to reveal his true identity to any new people she meets, she responded "if you're Jewish, I am too, I guess."  While Parker Tyler dismissed this narrative strategy as ludicrous, its celebration of being "not-Jewish" reveals the ideological underpinnings of viewing anti-Semitism as a social problem.

 

In keeping with the film noir genre, which stressed more tawdry social issues, the formulation for being not-Jewish appeared secondary to solving a senseless murder in Crossfire.  In fact, the victim Joseph Samuels was the only apparent Jewish character in the film, and he got killed in the opening scene.  Like Gentleman's Agreement, though, Crossfire emphasized the point of being not-Jewish by underscoring the senselessness of the crime.  During an interrogation, Finley, a homicide detective played by Robert Young, questioned Mitch, a soldier wrongly held on the murder charge:

 

crossfire_hatesagoodmotive.mov 

 

MITCH: I didn't murder anyone.  Why would I murder him?  What motive would I have?

 

FINLEY: Maybe you didn't like him.  Maybe you hated him.  Hate's a good motive.

 

MITCH: Why would I hate him?  I hardly knew him.  I only talked to him for a couple of hours.  He seemed like a nice guy.

 

FINLEY: You knew he was a Jew.

 

MITCH: No...

 

FINLEY: You mean to say you didn't know he was Jewish?

 

MITCH: No, I didn't think about it.  What would that have to do with it?  What's that got to do with me?

 

The scene ended with another detective bringing in Samuels' medical discharge as a result of wounds he received at Okinawa, thus subtly refuting the canard that Jews evaded military service during World War II while other Americans fought what was essentially Jewish war.

 

The production history behind Crossfire underscores the fluidity of Jewish identity and its happenstance status relative to a larger umbrella of national identity.  In the original novel on which the film is based, The Brick Foxhole by future Hollywood director Richard Brooks, the murder victim was not Jewish but gay.  Given the film industry's self-regulation apparatus at the time, that narrative would have been rejected outright before RKO shot a frame of film.  Indeed, a 1945 memo from the head of the Production Code Joseph I. Breen warned RKO that any story based on the novel was "thoroughly and completely unacceptable, on a dozen or more counts," and that "any motion picture following, even remotely, along the lines of the novel, could not be approved" (PCA)  While some have noted that in the postwar era, interchangeable gay and Jewish identities would suggest an intrinsic commonality between the two, the film's adaptation and domestication of a plot-line from a relatively obscure novel also pointed to a depiction that confronting anti-Semitism flowed from a universalized position of being not-Jewish, or not-gay for that matter.  In other words, the victim could indeed be anyone: black, Jew, or gay.  The depiction of a victim who coincidentally happened to hold a particular identity other than the norm, as well as the relatively fluid manner in which anyone could occupy that identity, became a hallmark for how American film depicted - and did not depict - the Jewish specificity of the Holocaust.

 

Taken together, though, the production history and critical reception reveal a crucial ideological tension that was as protean as it was unresolved.  Crossfire's happenstance ethnic victim could be anyone, a reading that Production Code correspondence encouraged.  At the same time, the Production Code expressed worry that both Crossfire and Gentleman's Agreement would call undue attention to anti-Semitism in the form of what its script reviews deemed "special pleading."   An early review of the novel for Gentleman's Agreement conducted by the PCA noted that "this story seems definitely to be a case of special pleading, inasmuch as all the difficulties arise from the question of anti-Semitism" (PCA).  Similarly, the PCA's review of RKO's script for Crossfire noted that the film would be "open to the charge of being a special pleading against current anti-Semitism."   In keeping with conventions of the social problem narrative, the individual reader's report implicitly suggested that Crossfire would be better off "as being a plea against all forms of racial and religious intolerance" (PCA).

 

While both RKO and 20th Century-Fox sparred with the PCA over such details as excessive drinking, depiction of divorce, and evocations of adultery in both films, there was surprisingly little contention in the production records between the PCA and the studios over the precedence of anti-Semitism in these films.  Accommodating of PCA concerns over special pleading, publicity for both films completely obscured the topic of anti-Semitism, let alone its relevance to the Holocaust.  "Some people carry blind, ugly HATE inside of them," warned the 20 July 1947 ad for Crossfire, "like a loaded gun" (New York Times).  An early newspaper ad for Gentleman's Agreement prominently featured the image of a book, which made sense given the popularity of Laura Z. Hobson's novel of the same name.  This image, though, offered value that went well beyond the popularity of the individual novel (New York Times).  The reputation of Hobson's book already had established the meaning of the film as being about anti-Semitism, so the ad for that film did not need to mention that the film was about anti-Semitism, or even hate.  A wide audience would already enter the theater knowing what the film was going to be about, while the film's publicity simply alluded to a popular book and thus left the industry less open to charges of special pleading against anti-Semitism.  The book also performed crucial publicity for the film industry by leveraging the cultural cache of film through the credibility of literature.  Gentleman's Agreement was not simply a film about anti-Semitism, but a film about a well-respected novel's treatment of anti-Semitism.  Finally, by prominently featuring the image of a book, the film's ad campaign authenticated the industry's well-established practices of using literary source material to vouch for a cinematic treatment, particularly where controversial material was involved.  Not only did the publicity campaign leave the industry less open to charges of special pleading; it usefully replicated a mode of production that in turn justified the industry's existing relations and practices of production. 

 

Within these existing relations and practices of production, critical reception could essentially do the work of situating both Crossfire and Gentleman's Agreement as tackling anti-Semitism, without necessarily disrupting pluralist and consensual views of anti-Semitism as a garden-variety threat to American democracy.  Just as Laura Z. Hobson's novel had already done the work of positioning audience expectations for Gentleman's Agreement, newspaper reviews could do the post-production work of positioning both films' social relevance without the studios having to make risky or controversial claims that might backfire.  Even if Crossfire's publicity did not make explicit that the film would be about anti-Semitism, a Hollywood Reporter headline hailed the film as a "dramatic smash indicting anti-Semitism" and for its "fine direction of courageous subject" (PCA).  A reviewer for Motion Picture Daily even acknowledged that anti-Semitism depicted in Gentleman's Agreement encompassed not only "the criminal horror of Hitler's Europe," but also "the cruelties and discriminations, the insulting attitudes and arrogant prejudices exercised against Jews in these United States" (PCA)

 

Conclusion

If such representations of anti-Semitism remained self-contained within these films, neither arguably would have amounted to not much of a response either to anti-Semitism or to the Holocaust.  However, the revised view of these films proposed here sees them not as an end point, but to use the terminology of media scholar John Fiske, as waystations pointing both to and through other, more varied and disjointed responses to anti-Semitism, Nazi or otherwise.  Elsewhere, I have discussed the possibility that American audiences well may have come to understand the European art film, such as Wanda Jakubowska's Polish 1948 film The Last Stage, as the appropriate mode of address to depict the Holocaust (Carr).  A scene from that film was the only depiction of a concentration camp appearing in The Diary of Anne Frank (20th Century-Fox, 1959), which otherwise takes place exclusively in Amsterdam, and mostly inside a cramped attic.  Meanwhile, in de-emphasizing a specifically Jewish dimension to the Holocaust, and instead emphasizing universal ideals of democracy and assimilated pluralism, Hollywood, with the urging of the Roosevelt Administration, believed that it did offer a response to Nazism by not specifically singling out Jews as victims of fascist ideology.

 

In continuing to reassess how Crossfire and Gentleman's Agreement addressed anti-Semitism and the Holocaust, this investigation needs to go beyond doing only a close reading of these films.  Ultimately, a comprehensive approach to studying these films would encompass a close reading, but also include tracing these productions from inception to consumption.  Researching the relevance of both of these films to the Holocaust, then, also would include both production and reception histories that use primary historical resources.  For production history, this involves archival research, such as studying studio memos and scripts.  However, even production history alone is insufficient, as this only would tell what Hollywood personnel might have intended, or how they imagined a particular audience.  Ultimately, a history of these films must include consideration of how actual and not imagined audiences made sense of these narratives.  This reception history would use film reviews, publicity, and discussions within the popular press to adequately understand the range of meanings actual audiences made of these narratives.

 

The revised view proposed here thus moves beyond looking at Crossfire and Gentleman's Agreement as discrete and ultimately failed confrontations of anti-Semitism trapped within the social problem genre, instead considering these films as part of a broader process of consent and negotiation between Hollywood, government, and audiences.  Analysis of these films ultimately must begin by examining the particular circumstances of their production, and how these films initially were laden with potential relevance to the Holocaust.  This analysis also must consider the ways in which these films underwent a highly regulated studio production process meant to standardize and to some extent domesticate the controversy inherent in these topics for a mass audience. Finally, this analysis must consider the ways in which these films emerged from that process overlaid with various publicity strategies meant to restore some of the films' resonance and narrative potential to speak to the Holocaust, even if that resonance and potential remained highly ambiguous and even contradictory.   An uncritical and ahistorical embrace of today's identity politics may miss how, by asserting a de-specified, universal identity, these films did offer a postwar response to the Holocaust.

 

I presented a version of this paper on 22 Nov 2010 at the Ottawa Jewish Community Centre, Ottawa ON, Canada.  I would like to express my gratitude to Deidre Butler, James Casteel, the Max and Tessie Zelikovitz Centre for Jewish Studies at Carleton U, and the audience in attendance that evening for the opportunity to share this earlier version.  Research for this article was supported by the Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies during a 2002-03 residential fellowship at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.

 

Primary Works Cited

 

Advertisement for Crossfire (RKO, 1946).  The New York Times 20 July 1947: L13.  Online.  Proquest Historical New York Times.  Internet.  29 Oct. 2010.  Available: http://proquest.umi.com.

 

Advertisement for Gentleman's Agreement (20th Century-Fox, 1947).  The New York Times 11 Nov 1947: L37.  Online.  Proquest Historical New York Times.  Internet.  10 Mar. 2011.  Available: http://proquest.umi.com.

 

Breen, Joseph I.  Memo to William Gordon. ts.  17 July 1945.  History of the Cinema.  Series 1: Hollywood and the Production Code Administration.  Woodbridge CT: Primary Source, 2006.  Microfilm reel 23, Crossfire folder.

 

Grant, Jack D.  "Crossfire Dramatic Smash Indicting Anti-Semitism."  Review of Crossfire (RKO, 1946).  The Hollywood Reporter 25 June 1947.  History of the Cinema.  Series 1: Hollywood and the Production Code Administration.  Woodbridge CT: Primary Source, 2006.  Microfilm reel 23, Crossfire folder.

 

Kane, Sherwin.  Review of Gentleman's Agreement (20th Century-Fox, 1947).  Motion Picture Daily 10 Nov. 1947.  History of the Cinema.  Series 1: Hollywood and the Production Code Administration.  Woodbridge CT: Primary Source, 2006.  Microfilm reel 23, Gentleman's Agreement folder.

 

Production Code Administration.  Review of Crossfire (In Production at RKO).  ts. n.d.  History of the Cinema.  Series 1: Hollywood and the Production Code Administration.  Woodbridge CT: Primary Source, 2006.  Microfilm reel 23, Crossfire folder.

 

Production Code Administration.  Review of Gentlemen's Agreement by Laura Z. Hobson Submitted by 20th Century-Fox. ts. n.d.  History of the Cinema.  Series 1: Hollywood and the Production Code Administration.  Woodbridge CT: Primary Source, 2006.  Microfilm reel 23, Gentlemen's Agreement folder.

 

United States.  War Dept.  Bureau of Public Relations.  "Western Europe in the Wake of World War II, June 17-July 18, 1945, As Seen by a Group of American Motion Picture Industry Executives Visiting the European and Mediterranean Theatre of Operation As Guests of the Military Authorities."  By Francis S. Harmon.  [Washington DC]: n. p., 1945.

 

---.  Office of Emergency Management.  Office of War Information.  Motion Picture Bureau.  Overseas Branch.  New York Review Board.  "Draft Motion Picture Guidance."  24 Aug. 1944.  Ts.  Overseas Motion Picture Bureau, Aug-Sep 1944 Folder.  Records Relating to the Overseas Branch, Compiled 1945-1945.  Records of the Historian.  Record Group 208: Records of the Office of War Information, 1926-1951.  MLR Number NC148 6B Box 2.  National Archives and Records Administration, College Park MD.

 

Secondary Works Cited

 

Carr, Steven Alan.  Hollywood and Anti-Semitism: A Cultural History Up to World War II.  Cambridge Studies in the History of Mass Communication.  Cambridge UK: Cambridge U P, 2001.

 

---.  "'To Encompass the Unseeable': The Last Stage (1948; Times Film, 1949) and Auschwitz in the Mind of Cold War America."  Reimagining Jewish History in the Cold War.  Cold War Cultures: Transnational and Interdisciplinary Perspectives.  U of Texas at Austin, Austin TX.  1 Oct. 2010.  http://stevenalancarr.pbworks.com/The-Last-Stage.

 

Langdon, Jennifer E.  Caught in the Crossfire: Adrian Scott and the Politics of Americanism in 1940s Hollywood.  New York NY: Columbia U P, 2008.  Online.  Gutenberg-e.  Internet.  6 Mar. 2011.  Available http://www.gutenberg-e.org/langdon/.

 

Maltby, Richard.  "Film Noir: The Politics of the Maladjusted Text."  Journal of American Studies 18.1 (1984): 49-71.  Online.  JSTOR.  Internet.  6 Mar. 2011.  Available http://www.jstor.org/stable/27554400.

 

Roffman, Peter, and Jim Purdy.  The Hollywood Social Problem Film: Madness, Despair, and Politics from the Depression to the Fifties. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1981.

 

Sayre, Nora.  "Assaulting Hollywood."  World Policy Journal 12.4 (1995-96): 51-60.  Online.  JSTOR.  Internet.  6 Mar. 2011.  Available http://www.jstor.org/stable/40209447.

 

Segrave, Kerry.  American Films Abroad: Hollywood's Domination of the World's Movie Screens from the 1890s to the Present. Jefferson, N.C: McFarland, 1997.

 

Short, K. R. M.  "Hollywood Fights Anti-Semitism, 1945-1947."  Feature Films as History.  K. R. M. Short, ed.  London UK: Croom, Helm, 1981.  157-89. pdf.

 

Tyler, Parker.  "Hollywood as a Universal Church."  American Quarterly 2.2 (1950): 165-76.  Online.  JSTOR.  Internet.  27 Feb. 2011.  Available http://www.jstor.org/stable/3031453.

 

Filmography

Unless otherwise noted, all films are widely available on DVD.

 

Crossfire (RKO, 1946).

 

Diary of Anne Frank, The (20th Century-Fox, 1959).

 

Gentleman's Agreement (20th Century-Fox, 1947).

 

Last Stage, The (1948; Times Film, 1949).  Polart Distribution released this film in 2009 on DVD with new English subtitles.  I have not screened this version.

 

Young Lions, The (20th Century-Fox, 1958).

 

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