In This Review

America and the Intellectual Cold War in Europe
America and the Intellectual Cold War in Europe
By Volker R. Berghahn
Princeton University Press, 2001, 362 pp.

This fascinating book is both a biography of the American diplomat Shepard Stone and an intricate account of U.S. cultural policies in Europe after World War II. The son of Jewish immigrants, Stone had studied in Weimar Germany and married a German before returning to the United States to write for The New York Times. After working for the American intelligence service during the war, this Germanophile anti-Nazi became the coordinator of the American High Commission's cultural policies in West Germany. A master at what is now called "networking," Stone later worked at the Ford Foundation and eventually returned to Europe, first as head of the Congress for Cultural Freedom and then as director of the Aspen Institute in Berlin. Berghahn focuses primarily on the dual purpose of Stone's activities: mobilizing the moderate European left against communism and fighting anti-Americanism among European intellectuals. The author also underscores the importance of cultural diplomacy and the incestuous relationship between "private" institutions and the U.S. government, noting how the Congress for Cultural Freedom was a key weapon in Cold War cultural battles. (In 1962, its budget of $1.8 million received $1.4 million from unknown "government sources" -- i.e., the CIA.) By throwing light on this neglected but vital story, Berghahn has made a major contribution to the understanding of American hegemony in postwar Europe.