As editor of Modern Age in the 1960s, Eugene Davidson introduced each quarterly issue with a thought-provoking contemplation of one or another of the decade's dizzying events. Gathered together here for the first time, the essays in Reflections on a Disruptive Decade present an intellectual conservative's perspective on an era which, because it underscores so many of the political divisions still with us today, continues to hold our fascination.
Davidson deals with the marvelous but confused realm of post-1945 international politics, in which the American people faced a new enemy, one often baffling and terrifying. The Cuban missile crisis was probably the most uncertain moment in foreign policy during this century. Although the crisis was resolved without bloodshed, there was intense danger of irrationality, for the Russians foolhardily had sent nuclear missiles to Cuba.
Other topics Davidson addresses are the Civil Rights movement, the policies and programs of Lyndon Johnson's Great Society, and the East-West battles of ideology and arms in Europe, Vietnam, and the Middle East. With remarkable shrewdness, Davidson illuminates many contradictions and excesses of the decade's liberal ascendancy, and presciently detects signs pointing to a resurgence of the nation's conservative forces.
Although more than thirty years have passed, Davidson's essays still contain great clarity, and his appraisals are still keen. Reflections on a Disruptive Decade is a truly remarkable addition to the work of this distinguished scholar.