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Related to McCarthyism: Joseph McCarthy


1. The practice of publicizing accusations of political disloyalty or subversion with insufficient regard to evidence.
2. The use of unfair investigatory or accusatory methods in order to suppress opposition.

[After Joseph Raymond McCarthy.]

Mc·Car′thy·ist n.


1. (Government, Politics & Diplomacy) the practice of making unsubstantiated accusations of disloyalty or Communist leanings
2. (Government, Politics & Diplomacy) the use of unsupported accusations for any purpose
[C20: after Joseph McCarthy]
McˈCarthyite n, adj


(məˈkɑr θiˌɪz əm)

the use of unsubstantiated accusations or unfair investigative techniques in an attempt to expose disloyalty or subversion.
[1950, Amer.; after J. R. McCarthy; see -ism]
Mc•Car′thy•ite`, n.


1. U.S. the practice of making accusations of disloyalty, especially of pro-Communist activity, often unsupported or based on doubtful evidence.
2. any attempt to restrict political criticism or individual dissent by claiming it to be unpatriotic or pro-Communist.
See also: Politics
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.McCarthyism - unscrupulously accusing people of disloyalty (as by saying they were Communists)
witch-hunt - searching out and harassing dissenters


[məˈkɑːθɪɪzəm] N (US) (Pol) → macartismo m
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References in periodicals archive ?
In 1999, Amiens looks at McCarthyism for the third time (several of the interviews in the 1995 docu "Red Hollywood" were conducted at the eighth edition of the fest) via the program "Between McCarthyism and the Vietnam War.
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Lynne Cheney, copied by many other conservative op-ed pundits, points to the presentations of the Ku Klux Klan and McCarthyism as evidence of history that is too dreary.
Pilloried during the McCarthy era ( <IR> see MCCARTHYISM </IR> ), she published radical journalism in the next two decades, but few books.
American historian Ekirch (1915-2000) wrote the original during the long night of rabid McCarthyism and the Cold War; it was published overseas, by Oxford University Press in 1956.
Indeed, claims Richard Fried, a leading historian of the Cold War and McCarthyism, "Bruce Barton is surely the most prominent American of the 20th Century without a biography.
The Crucible,'' Arthur Miller's play about the dramatic events surrounding the Salem witch trials of 1692 with parallels to 1950s McCarthyism, will open tonight at the Repertory East Playhouse on San Fernando Road in the Newhall arts district.
Yes, it may have a resonance of McCarthyism but I for one would rather come under the scrutiny of my peers than have another single individual die at the hands of terrorists
Those similarities make Thomas Doherty's excellent Cold War, Cool Medium: Television, McCarthyism, and American Culture (Columbia University Press) more timely that its tide suggests.
After receiving this list from Republican members of Congress, NIH officials are now contacting researchers and raising fears that their research may be in danger of losing funding," he said, calling the tactic "scientific McCarthyism.