Ehsan Masood has been searching for the last survivors among the writers and academics accused of plotting communist subversion within the United States in the McCarthy era.
Science writer Ehsan Masood has been searching for the last survivors among the writers and academics accused decades ago of plotting communist subversion within the United States in the McCarthy era.
There are a few still living from among the tens of thousands of writers and academics fired from jobs or blacklisted following accusations that they were Communists. Many left the country voluntarily, some were deported, and others served time in prison. A tap on the shoulder from the FBI or a mention in one of the public hearings is all it took for careers to be wrecked with little opportunity for redress.
Ehsan Masood has tracked people down and researched in the libraries and archives of universities such as MIT and Harvard, whose former staff and students found their lives upended when confronted with allegations of subversive activity.
Producer: Peter Snowdon