In Enemy Number One: The United States of American in Soviet Ideology and Propaganda, 1945-1959
(Oxford University Press, 2019), Dr. Rósa Magnúsdóttir
of Aarhus University, explores depictions of America in post-war Soviet propaganda. While the 1945 “meeting on the Elbe” marked a high point in United States/Soviet friendship, official relations deteriorated quickly thereafter.
Enemy Number One
incorporates a wide range of source material such as letters by Soviet citizens, popular magazines, Voice of America broadcasts, and a wide range of secondary scholarly literatures. Among the author’s conclusions based on this body of evidence, are that Russian state propaganda differentiated between “good” and “bad” Americans, that state propaganda to the contrary, everyday people in the USSR never lost a sense that WWII had been the site of genuine friendship between Americans and Soviet citizens, and, intriguingly, that Soviet propaganda could have been far more effective in the United State than it in fact was.
Aaron Weinacht is Professor of History at the University of Montana Western in Dillon, MT. He teaches courses on Russian and Soviet History, World History, and Philosophy of History. His research interests include the sociological theorist Philip Rieff and the influence of Russian nihilism on American libertarianism.