22 February 2013
Bias of the Cold War
The books that will be used for the purpose of this paper are, “A History of the cold war”, by John Lukacs and The “West and the World”, by Glenn Blackburn. Lukacs had a difficult thesis to find because he did not implicitly state it but he was trying to argue the historical importance of certain Cold war events and movements. On the other hand Blackburn in his book said “What should an intelligent citizen know about the world today? That is the question this book seeks to address”. What he really means by this is what should the citizens know about the cold war. He went on to explain that he would argue about the importance of other events that he had throughout the book. Both of the books were trying to attempt the same thing, tell uneducated Americans about what was happening in the Cold War at the time.
Lukacs developed and created his book in a very short amount of time. He rushed the book in writing and into production. Blackburn did quite the opposite; he waited until the Cold War was nearly wrapped up to publish his book, which made his book much more historically accurate. Both authors relied heavily on secondary sources but it seemed that they also relied on one primary source. That primary source was themselves. I think that because they did this they lost credibility in their work. Lukacs said in his preface that it was difficult to find credible sources which I believe made him rely on himself for more small facts throughout his book. The books were organized quite differently. Lukacs only had two sections, the main events and the main movements. Blackburn included four sections in his book, The conflict between two superpowers, the prosperity of the western nations, the rich nations and the poor nations, and the western spirit. Lukacs wrote his book creating a timeline from 1945 to around 1960. Blackburn created his book starting in the same year but ending around 1980. Lukacs focused solely on the Cold War events and movements between the USSR and the United States but Blackburn included information about other nations at the time, especially third world nations that many were not concerned with at the time in which these books were written. This gives Blackburn a more complete history of the given time period than Lukacs. Both of the writers emphasize the ideas and beliefs of Americans near the end of their books but both did it in a very different way.
Lukacs had a ton of bias when he was writing his book and its hard to blame him. Lukacs blatantly writes how awful communism is and how essentially the Soviets were evil, he said, “I have been unduly broad minded about Russia”. That proves that he did not even attempt to hide his bias. I completely agree that communism is wrong and a terrible form of government but if I want a true book about the history of the cold war, it cannot be this biased. It would…