The Back-to-Africa Movement, American Colonization Society, and the Know Somethings

The July release of Afro-Americana Imprints, 1535-1922: From the Library Company of Philadelphia has several items about the American Colonization Society and the movement to return freedman to Africa. Founded in 1816, the American Colonization Society was a coalition between two distinct groups: abolitionist evangelicals and Quakers on one side, and, on the other, slaveholders who saw in the repatriation of freedmen a way to prevent slave rebellions. Beginning in 1821, thousands of freedmen would eventually emigrate from the United States to what would become the Republic of Liberia.

A Sermon, Preached at New-Ark, October 22d, 1823, Before the Synod of New-Jersey, for the Benefit of the African School, under the Care of the Synod. By Samuel Miller, D.D., Professor in the Theological Seminary at Princeton (1823)
The Back-to-Africa Movement, American Colonization Society, and the Know Somethings

Every Leaf a Panacea? Health and Wellness in 19th-Century American Pamphlets

The latest recent release of American Pamphlets, Series 1, 1820-1922, includes many publications concerning health and treatments for a host of physical and mental complaints. Some of these pamphlets are almost 200 years old and yet they seem almost current in their concerns and causes, if not in their use of language, to contemporary American life. Cautions to Young Persons Concerning Health, in a Public Lecture Delivered at the Close of the Medical Course in the Chapel at Cambridge,  November 20, 1804; Containing the General Doctrine of Dyspepsia and Chronic Diseases; Shewing the Evil Tendency of the use of Tobacco upon Young Persons; More Especially the Pernicious Effects of Smoking Cigars. With Observations on the Use of Ardent and Vinous Spirits. By Benjamin Waterhouse, M.D., Professor of the Theory and Practice of Physic, and Lecturer on Natural History in the University of Cambridge, New England (1822)
Every Leaf a Panacea? Health and Wellness in 19th-Century American Pamphlets

Civil War Intrigue and Reflections: Recent Items from The American Civil War Collection

The July release of The American Civil War Collection, 1860-1922: From the American Antiquarian Society includes a tale of a British plot to destroy democracy, a case of Southern espionage, and a retrospective examination of the Trent Affair. Also found here are popular cultural items such as the history of a famous mid-19th-century singing group and a colorful children’s picture book featuring an advertisement for battle maps and more.

The Present Attempt to Dissolve the American Union: A British Aristocratic Plot (1862)
By B. 

Civil War Intrigue and Reflections: Recent Items from The American Civil War Collection

Religion and Atheism in the USSR: Selected Highlights from Recently Released JPRS Reports

The June release of Joint Publications Research Service (JPRS) Reports, 1957-1994, includes a number of topical translations from the mid-1960s concerning religion and atheism in the Soviet Union. Below are five examples:

 

Need for Special Atheist Courses for Students of Higher Education Institutions (1966)
In this article by a history department professor and his student, the writers argue that it is necessary for university students to be taught a more robust atheism in order to be able to refute the beliefs of sectarians and cultists. It is not enough to be an atheist; a young educated person has to know enough about religion—Christianity—to be able to make a logical argument against it. The authors suggest that comparing what is written in the gospel Mark to what is said in Matthew and Mark about the same instance will act as a wedge. The believer must choose among apostles as to whom to believe. Thus is doubt provoked. Knowing these “little things" about religious doctrine and practice can be more effective in winning the argument than “the most extensive discussions on general themes."

Religion and Atheism in the USSR: Selected Highlights from Recently Released JPRS Reports

“One Lousy Sheep”: The 1958 Soviet Denunciation of Nobel Prize Winner Boris Pasternak

In an article in the June 30, 2014, edition of the Washington Post, columnist and editorial page editor Fred Hiatt discusses the harsh denunciation of Boris Pasternak in a 1958 speech. The criticism of Pasternak as a pig occurred toward the end of a long and turgid oration on the subject of the Komsomol’s glorious history and mission by its director, Vladimir Semichastny, who later came to head the KGB. 

The attack on Pasternak, who a week earlier had been named the winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature for his novel Doctor Zhivago, was, as Hiatt notes, partially dictated by Nikita Khrushchev himself.  That Oct. 29, 1958, speech was broadcast on the Soviet Home Service, translated by the Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS), and published the following day in the FBIS Daily Report. An excerpt from the 18-page FBIS translation appears below:

However, as the Russian saying goes: “Even in a good flock there may be one lousy sheep” (parshyvaya outsa). We have such a lousy sheep in our socialist society in the person of Pasternak, who has written his slanderous, so-called novel.  He has gladdened our enemies so much that they have bestowed on him—disregarding of course the artistic merits of his trashy book—a Nobel Prize. We have masters of writing, whose works are uncontestable in their artistic merit, but their authors have not been awarded a Noble (sic) Prize. However, for slander, for libelling the Soviet system, socialism, and Marxism, Pasternak has been awarded the Nobel Prize.

“One Lousy Sheep”: The 1958 Soviet Denunciation of Nobel Prize Winner Boris Pasternak

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