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Goehr, Lydia. Political music and the politics of music
1994, Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 52 (1):99-112.
Added by: Chris Blake-Turner, Contributed by: Christy Mag Uidhir

Introduction: On September 24th, 1947, a composer with “an international reputation” became the first Holly wood artist to be called before the Committee on Un-American Activities [HUAC]. The charge against him was that his music had aided the Communist infiltration of the motion-picture industry.’ A significant part of his defense con sisted in his claim that he was only a musician and thus not responsible for any part of a Com munist conspiracy. What is peculiar is that he almost got away with this unlikely defense, unlikely because he had spent much of his life developing a political music consistent with the ideals of Communism. In the end, the Commit tee caught him out on technical grounds: it found a history of inaccurate statements in his visa applications. The composer was deported. It was the second exile of his life: the first had been from Germany ten years earlier.

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