David Bernstein on the New Deal and Civil Rights


One theme of Ira Katznelson's Fear Itself is that politicians from the Jim Crow South controlled key committees in both houses of Congress in the 1930s, and therefore exerted a huge influence on the course of the New Deal. That part, David Bernstein notes in his review, is true. Katznelson also indicates that the New Deal would have been more "progressive" but for the Southern Democrats. That part, Bernstein argues, is more dubious.