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A Walk Through the 20th Century With Bill Moyers
United States — History — 1945-1953
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The Arming of the Earth [electronic resource]

The 20th century began with enormous hopes for a future made safe and humane by technology. Although it realized some of these hopes, the century neared its end under the shadow of superweapons that still threaten the earth with annihilation. In this program, Bill Moyers traces the evolution of three instruments that enabled combatants to mass-produce death-the machine gun, the submarine, and the bomber plane. Each weapon helped to close the gap between soldier and target, regardless of whether that target was another soldier or an innocent civilian. And each was introduced with the promise that it would end war by making it too terrible to endure.
2010; 1984

The Reel World of News [electronic resource]

In 1911, the first newsreels flickered in America's nickelodeons. In the mid-1960s, they vanished from movie theaters as nightly television newscasts came to dominate visual journalism. In between, newsreels grew into a unique 20th-century institution that informed and entertained whole generations. In this program, Bill Moyers conducts a tour of the cultural and political landscape so dramatically rendered by the American newsreel. Accompanied by a rich tapestry of archival clips, Moyers talks with the announcers, composers, and cameramen who still relish memories of jostling and hustling to catch the parade of history on film.
2010; 1984

I. I. Rabi [electronic resource]: Man of the Century

Innovation enabled the United States to take on the mantle of world leadership-most importantly, innovation in military technology. But among the great minds that drove American innovation, using science to make war sometimes led to questions, dilemmas, and even second thoughts. In this program, Bill Moyers presents a profile of I. I. Rabi, winner of the 1944 Nobel Prize in physics and an early developer of radar for use in World War II. Rabi also participated in the Manhattan Project and was present at the detonation of the first atomic bomb-an event which transformed him into an advocate for restraint in the use of nuclear power.
2010; 1984

Post-War Hopes, Cold War Dreams [electronic resource]

The 1950s in America were a time of nostalgia and neurosis. Factories poured out goods, the dollar was powerful, and the United States - filled with the heady optimism of victory in World War II - believed that it could politically, culturally, and militarily lead the world. But the decade also saw the solidification of the Iron Curtain in Europe, the entrenchment of Communism in China, years of so-called police action in Korea, and a Red Scare that divided Americans at home. Bill Moyers shows how an initial burst of optimism fostered an era of American conformity, in which fitting in led to a hostility and distrust of those who stood out.