H-Diplo Roundtable XIX, 10 on Hearts, Minds, Voices: US Cold War Public Diplomacy and the Formation of the Third World

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Roundtable Review
Volume XIX, No. 10 (2017)
6 November 2017

Roundtable Editors: Thomas Maddux and Diane Labrosse
Roundtable and Web Production Editor: George Fujii

Introduction by Nicholas J. Cull

Jason Parker.  Hearts, Minds, Voices: US Cold War Public Diplomacy and the Formation of the Third World.  New York:  Oxford University Press, 2016.  ISBN:  9780190251840 (hardcover, $35.00).

URL: http://www.tiny.cc/Roundtable-XIX-10


© 2017 The Authors.

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 United States License.


Introduction by Nicholas J. Cull, University of Southern California

One of the liveliest subfields of U.S. diplomatic history in recent years has been that examining the interrelationship of communication and foreign policy. The days when book-length studies were limited to semi-memoirs by recently retired practitioners (the works of Hans N. Tuch and Wilson Dizard are the models here)[1] are long gone. Today the mechanisms of what became known by the mid-1960s as public diplomacy are well charted and the role of propaganda in the early years of the Cold War is especially well understood. The salience of the Cold War at its end led the first wave of scholars to focus on the role of public diplomacy in the East-West dynamic. This soon broadened to include attention to what could be called the West-West, with studies of the role of U.S. public diplomacy and exchange in relations with allies: the Netherlands, Spain, and Germany have been especially well served. In parallel, scholars have worked on individual media such as radio, art, music, exhibitions and film, or on particular themes such as family/gender, race, and human rights. The value of Jason Parker’s book is to address a neglected geographical dynamic—the North/South—and to do it in a way which shows how profoundly Cold War messages impacted on their audience and how they rebounded in unexpected ways on their originators. While not every reader will share Parker’s conclusion that American Cold-War public diplomacy was the great driver of the formation of a Third World, future discussion must now accept its role and focus on assessing its extent.

The reviewers gathered for this roundtable are uniformly impressed by Parker’s achievement and most especially his mastery of the U.S. archives. It is notable that an array of reviewers from disparate fields and regional specialism all find Parker in sympathy with their approach and his insights consistent with their regional knowledge. Elisabeth Leake, a British-based scholar of post-colonial South Asia[2] and Frank Gerits, a historian of sub-Saharan African whose scholarship includes examination of French and Belgian public diplomacy are both appreciative.[3] Justin Hart, author of the 2013 book Empire of Ideas: The Origins of Public Diplomacy and the Transformation of US Foreign Policy,[4] which provides the backstory to the developments analyzed by Parker, welcomes the volume as a “much-anticipated” piece of diplomatic history. Cartographic rhetorician Timothy Barney [5]goes so far as to induct Parker into the ranks of his discipline, though he cannot resist providing hints on how his approach could be even sharper. For my part, as the author of the first archive-based history of U.S. public diplomacy for the entire duration of the Cold War,[6] reading Parker’s book fulfilled my hope that my sketch map of the terrain might help other scholars to fill in the details and advance our collective understanding of this increasingly important dimension of foreign policy. It is good to see an originally conceived, meticulously researched, and well-written book getting the recognition it deserves.

The reviewers all see Parker’s book as a launch pad to further work. Barney, Gerits, Hart, and Leake all emphasize a point made by Parker himself, that the book’s claims require local study in the archives of the nations of the Global South themselves. All raise issues for Parker or others following in his footsteps to consider. Hart asks about the comparative impact of exposure to regular American commercial culture as opposed to the mediated messaging of the United States Information Agency. Leake observes powerfully that the public diplomacy process was not only forming identity overseas but also transforming America’s self-understanding in the process, and calls for that dynamic to be integrated into wider understandings of public diplomacy. Gerits suggests an analysis which brings in the perspective of the retreating colonial powers of the era. He is especially provocative speaking with knowledge of the archives of the Ghana, Kenya, South Africa, Ethiopia, and Senegal, and noting the extent to which the state of American Civil Rights was not the dominant issue, rather it concerned issues of the best path to development.

One question is the nature of the wider meaning of this collective effort to document the development of U.S. public diplomacy is for contemporary U.S. foreign policy. While the subject is studied through multiple disciplinary lenses beyond history, including those of international relations, communication, marketing, and psychology, history remains the most developed discourse. We now know that American public diplomacy was important in determining the outcome of the Cold War. We know that the application of U.S. public diplomacy had unintended consequences in the regions where the U.S. was engaged and at home. We know that the lessons of the U.S. Cold-War soft power campaign are being eagerly adapted by China and Russia for their own agendas. Yet the U.S. is retreating from its former engagement, and major programs such as Fulbright are in jeopardy while the post of Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy lies vacant. At what point do historians of any political stripe point out that this might be a mistake?



Jason Parker is Associate Professor of History at Texas A&M University, where he has taught since 2006. He completed his PhD in 2002 at the University of Florida under Bob McMahon, He is the author of Brother’s Keeper: The United States, Race, and Empire in the British Caribbean, 1937-1962 (Oxford University Press, 2008) which won the SHAFR Bernath Book Prize, and of articles in the Journal of American History, Diplomatic History, the Journal of African American History, International History Review, and elsewhere. He has received research fellowships in support of his new book Hearts, Minds, Voices: U.S. Cold War Public Diplomacy and the Formation of the Third World (Oxford University Press, 2016) and of his next project, a comparative study of postwar federations in the decolonizing world.

Nicholas J. Cull is professor of Public Diplomacy at the Annenberg School of Communication, University of Southern California. He is one of the pioneers of the historical study of public diplomacy. His publications have included The Cold War and the United States Information Agency: American Propaganda and Public Diplomacy, 1945-1989 (Cambridge University Press, 2008) and The Decline and Fall of the United States Information Agency: American Public Diplomacy, 1989-2001 (Palgrave, 2012) as well as numerous book chapters, articles and white papers on the subject of the role of communication in diplomacy. He is a regular guest speaker at foreign ministries and diplomatic academies around the world and president of the International Association for Media and History. His current research includes an introduction to the field aimed at practitioners and a monograph on the role of global networks of public diplomacy in ending Apartheid in South Africa.

Timothy Barney is an Assistant Professor of Rhetoric & Communication Studies at the University of Richmond. His book Mapping the Cold War: Cartography and the Framing of America’s International Power was published by the University of North Carolina Press in 2015.

Frank Gerits is a Lecturer in Conflict Studies at the University of Amsterdam, a research fellow at the International Studies Group of the University of the Free State in Bloemfontein and Senior Editor for History, Politics, IR, and Social Science for the European Journal of American Studies. He was the Agnese N. Haury postdoctoral scholar at NYU in 2015 and has published articles in Cold War History, the International History Review and Diplomatic History (forthcoming). He is currently working on his book project: The Ideological Scramble for Africa (1945-1966).

Justin Hart is Associate Chair and Associate Professor of History at Texas Tech University. He is the author of Empire of Ideas (Oxford University Press, 2013) and several articles and book chapters on U.S. public diplomacy and the cultural dimensions of U.S. foreign relations. He completed his Ph.D. in History at Rutgers University. He is currently writing a history of the failed campaign for Universal Military Training in the United States.

Elisabeth Leake is Lecturer in International History at the University of Leeds. She received her Ph.D. in history at the University of Cambridge before completing a Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship at Royal Holloway, University of London. Her work focuses on the intersections between South Asian and international history, and she has published in The Historical Journal, Journal of Contemporary History, Modern Asian Studies, and International History Review. Her book, The Defiant Border: The Afghan-Pakistan Borderlands in the Era of Decolonization, 1936-1965, was published by Cambridge University Press in 2016. She is currently working on an international history of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.


In 1955, the very same year as the summit at Bandung, the popular Indian politician and associate of Indian President Jawaharlal Nehru, Dr. Sampurnanand, gave the opening address to the United Nations’ first regional cartographic conference for Asia and the Far East in Mussoorie, India. In the speech, Sampurnanand upheld the idea that a lack of adequate mapping was a sign of global inequality that required rectification. He told the delegates, “Fairly accurate maps showing political sub-divisions and the positions of the principal seas, rivers, and mountains are still luxuries in certain parts of the civilized world.”[7] The age-old connection of maps to ‘civilization’ was especially heightened here in a cold-war context. To participate in the new global world order, a nation had to know itself; maps, thus, were important not just for their geographic information but for their utility as a development symbol. The very act of mapping allowed nations to enter into a global conversation. An accurate map was a token of national identity in a battle for the hearts and minds of the so-called developing world.

The cartographic metaphor runs like a pulse throughout Jason C. Parker’s Hearts, Minds, Voices, but it is not an empty literary gesture. In the book, Parker uses the map motif frequently to demonstrate the spatialization of the Cold War’s worlds and imagined communities—at one point early on, he refers to “two cartographies” in the heat of the Cold War: “two new global maps: that of decolonization replacing the European empires with Asian, Africa, Middle Eastern, and Caribbean nation-states, and that of the Cold War dividing the globe first into two and then into three ‘worlds.’” (5) Elsewhere, he often refers to the United States’ “mental map,” the “new world map,” or “geostrategic” and “geopolitical” maps. But he does not use mapping as some kind of chessboard realpolitik, which is often the case when discussing cold-war blocs—he has a much more nuanced appreciation for the map as a site of spatial contestation, a place of political projection. A map, he understands, is something that is rhetorically constructed for particular audiences, not just a depiction of given geographical relationships. And so this appreciation that Cold War space had to be invented and re-invented provides an important thread throughout the book. The expert weaving of the cartographic metaphor also shows off Parker as an able stylist, capable of turning complex and often contradictory archival bits and pieces into an accessible story.

Parker is also, not coincidentally, a rhetoric man, even if he may not know it. He titles his very first chapter, “In the Beginning Was the Word,” and then proceeds to open with a quote from Martin Medhurst, a leading rhetorician: “Rhetoric [was] a generative principle of Cold War politics…. A cold war is, by definition, a rhetorical war, a war fought with words, speeches, pamphlets, public information … campaigns, slogans, gestures, symbolic actions, and the like” (1). In this way, Parker’s book joins those of scholars in rhetorical studies, as the very symbolic action of the Cold War becomes a central actor in itself. The opening chapter titles could have also easily been called “In the Beginning Was the Image,” as the United States’ concern for its public image in these engagements with decolonizing nations was paramount. Cold-war diplomatic bureaucrats sought the preservation of a kind of morally benevolent reputation for the U.S. in the hearts and minds of the burgeoning South, a message that proved impossibly hard to keep consistent and loud enough.

Together, this rhetorical map of the Cold War, being held together by the “connective tissue” of public diplomacy, forms the basis for the compelling Hearts, Minds, Voices. But, as Parker well knows, that connective tissue was paper-thin at times. Certainly, it has been emphasized in other literature, but Parker does the most thorough job of proving that U.S. public diplomacy was fitful, and that its centralization and rise to prominence for cold-war administrations came relatively late. The proper coordination between white, gray, and black brands of propaganda was frightfully elusive, and such propaganda seemed to be accompanied continually by a kind of angst about its worth and effects, making the reader wonder if it was ever pursued confidently in this period at all. That lack of confidence in its different guises actually forms a sturdy structure and flow for the book’s rough chronology, as sometimes the United States Information Agency and the other institutions involved in propaganda, and later public diplomacy, learned from mistakes and built on them, while other times they could not. In Hearts, Minds, Voices, initiatives like the Campaign for Truth and the Alliance for Progress are often one step forward and two-to-three steps back in terms of their efficiency and efficacy in reaching the right audiences at the right times. We clearly see, through Parker’s careful work, the inchoate and immature ‘catch-up’ of the Truman administration and the move into the more Madison Avenue sheen, centralized efforts, and psychological warfare of the Eisenhower era, which then feeds into development theories of the cool and rational technocrats of Kennedy. Within this trajectory, there were successes, to be sure, but Parker’s point is that the Nkrumahs, Nehrus, and Nassers had more than enough creative ingenuity to adapt the mediums of U.S. public diplomacy for their own ends. It is notable that Parker is able to make the rhetoric of these personalities come alive, even as he works with mostly U.S.-based sources—he is able to fill in a lot of the archival silences with his lively treatments.

The not-so-silent specter, of course, over almost the whole of Parker’s book is another South—that of Jim Crow. While some of this repeats the thesis of Mary Dudziak’s important work, this is very welcome repetition, and Parker certainly brings lively new evidence of the toll that the violence against black Americans brought to the business of public diplomacy.[8] How could cold-war liberation rhetoric ever be fully successful when the U.S. government could not protect its own people? This problem suggests an almost shocking short-sightedness—Parker’s evidence smartly offers that U.S. officials were well aware that the lack of civil rights was a transnational embarrassment, but they seemed flummoxed in coming up with a sufficient answer. The cold-war domestic sphere could not be contained, to use the parlance of the time, and the existence of permeable boundaries between the homefront and the international landscape are a hallmark of this book.

And like a good rhetoric scholar, Parker is deft at articulating the tensions between the intention of the ‘speaker’ and the appropriation and re-appropriation by the audience. He is particularly good, for example, at balancing the aims and strategies of U.S. public diplomacy policies with the divergent interpretation of those by self-determining nations across the global South. In fact, perhaps his book’s central contribution is that the concept of the ‘Third World’ was fashioned out of a host of inventive resources, some of which were provided by the United States, but more often stitched together by key transnational actors on the receiving end.

However, if we do adopt Parker as an honorary rhetorician, we should ask a few questions of him. One of the few small complaints to be registered against his book is that the actual content of the public diplomacy—the very words and visuals that appealed to the hearts and minds—is often lost or missed. We see the movement of the public diplomacy and its strategic flow, but we do not always interface with the rhetoric that Parker is actually looking at. The propaganda pieces themselves are fascinating and cry out for at least a bit of textual analysis. What do the films, newsreels, pamphlets, and fliers look like? What kind of persuasive work do they actually do? What was the substance of the American message that “was being reliably transmitted via a majority of press and radio outlets” (71) in Guatemala? What did Vice President Nixon actually say to Ghanaians in 1957? It is a bit like watching a documentary of a play that focuses on the backstage while eschewing what is going on in the front stage. If Parker wants us to accept that the ‘Third World’ was largely self-created through the interpretation of public diplomacy materials, then it would help to engage with some of the creative ‘substance’ of such materials. Sometimes the ‘texts’ seem like afterthoughts to the background give-and-take between U.S. officials who are shepherding them. A rhetorical scholar would want to mine what Medhurst referred to as the “symbolic actions” of the widely distributed ephemera.[9]

This is just gentle pushback, though, because a rhetorical scholar may lack Parker’s historical acumen at adroitly narrating a contentious and messy world of reports, memos, speeches, and letters. Instead of wishing for a different study, it is perhaps more fruitful to celebrate what Parker has actually given us: an integral reminder of the contingencies that marked the Cold War. It is sometimes easy to see the East/West and North/South tensions as givens, ignoring that they in fact have to be argued and contested into being. A map has to be drawn after all—it does not arrive fully formed. And Parker points out rightfully that there is much more good work to be done. Perhaps in the style of Odd Arne Westad’s The Global Cold War, we may expect in the future a look at public diplomacy through the lens of a more global archive.[10] Maybe Parker will write that book, or his work will inspire others to fill in that map. As both a rhetoric and a map man myself, I can testify that Parker’s research has significant utility outside of the confines of the cadre of diplomatic historians. His own cartography is an important one to add to the atlas.


Review by Frank Gerits, University of Amsterdam

In Hearts, Minds, Voices Jason Parker provides an insightful and thought-provoking analysis of the different ways in which U.S. public diplomacy during the Truman, Eisenhower, and Kennedy years played a key role in shaping the conceptual entity of the Third World. The cold-war battle for hearts and minds in the underdeveloped areas of the world forced groupings which had been forming since the 1930s to become more political, coalescing around nonalignment, economic development, and modernization. Parker refines the argument that the Third World was created by the cold-war standoff by pointing out that this creation was an “unintended consequence” rather than a conscious effort on the part of the superpowers or postcolonial leaders to structure the world (167).

The approach of U.S. public diplomats to build on subtle persuasion was confronted with an explosion of Global South public diplomacy that nurtured the Third World as an imagined community. Moreover, the mental map of the Third World became defined less by its colonial past and more by its poverty, which is also how Latin America entered the definition of the Third World after 1961. Parker’s book thus seeks to expand Odd Arne Westad’s definition of third-world intervention.[11] The Third World was not only shaped by violence and a competition over development, but also by a “multifront media war” or public diplomacy, a non-violent type of intervention (3).

From the vantage point of the U.S. archives, this book provides readers with a host of insights which are refreshing in their subtlety. The first two chapters survey the Truman Administration’s public diplomacy policy beyond Europe. The study of President Harry Truman’s efforts in the developing world has concentrated on Point Four, the technical assistance program which was announced by the President in his inaugural speech on 20 January 1949. Parker, however, convincingly shows that the White House also turned to psychological warfare to address the challenges of the Third World. While instruction rather than persuasion was the focus, the public image dimension quickly became more important. The war in Korea in 1950 not only impressed upon the Truman administration the need to fight the cold-war battle for hearts and minds, as Walter Hixson wrote in Parting the Curtain.[12] It also “led the Truman administration to redouble” the propaganda for Point Four while countries like India and Indonesia refined their neutralist stance (39-40). Moreover, these early public diplomacy experiments produced important legacies in terms of goals and methods. Whereas the United States Information and Educational Exchange (USIE) stressed the importance of public persuasion, the Technical Cooperation Administration (TCA) emphasized the need for instructional educational materials to complement the development aid that was being offered. This tension between persuasion and development, Parker shows, remained a constant source of concern throughout the 1950s and 1960s. In the summer of 1962, for instance, observers worried that the outreach surrounding the Alliance for Progress, President John F. Kennedy’s signature initiative in Latin America, was succeeding better than the actual policy, creating a gap between expectations and results of U.S. development efforts.

One of the biggest achievements of this book is the reconstruction of the Eisenhower administration’s response to the Bandung Conference. While Parker still views the U.S. answer as a failure, he does reject the claim that the President “wanted to avoid Africa”–and by extension the Third World–“as much as possible” as Tim Borstelmann has quipped.[13] Parker’s book also reveals the administration’s reliance on proxies at the Afro-Asian meeting, an interesting extension of a concept that is so closely connected with violent intervention. Piecing together the White House’s response to decolonization is a strenuous undertaking because the collections of the Eisenhower Library are organized to reflect the image of a general turned Cold Warrior. As archivists impress upon researchers who visit Abilene, Eisenhower was a man concerned with the Soviet Union and the military industrial complex, not a leader troubled by a nascent Third World. Parker defied the logic of those archives and paints a vivid picture of an administration who took this “minor threat” seriously (80).

Parker’s study is important because it is the first book to pay sustained attention to U.S. public diplomacy in the Third World. Although a more explicit discussion of the role of public diplomacy in the different presidential doctrines might have been interesting, it convincingly refutes the claims that U.S. public diplomacy towards the Third World was improvised and solely aimed at repairing the damage done by the civil rights debate to the U.S. image.[14] On the contrary, U.S. public diplomacy allowed new concerns about a changing world to seep into policy-making.

This book is even more remarkable because of its methodology. Parker wants to further the “internationalization of postwar historiography,” but does so “within certain limitations.” Since this study relies solely on U.S. sources it can only reflect on “Global South agency as seen from Washington” (14). It presents the U.S. as a “nation among nations,” to borrow a phrase from Thomas Bender, which joined a multitude of third-world countries that were engaged in a conversation about the third-world project, primarily via public diplomacy.[15] It traces how the United States Information Agency (USIA) became more aware of the issues animating third-world conversation. The superpower conflict–Parker argues–acted as a glue for the diverse intellectual and geographic parts of the Global South, since it prompted peoples in the Global South of their common interest in seeking to transcend rather than join the Cold War.

While unravelling many of the complexities behind U.S. decision-making in a nuanced fashion, Parker’s global approach to U.S. diplomatic history has its limitations. First, Parker’s conclusion that public diplomacy was a “cacophony” rather than a one-way conversation is an important insight (92). However, it is unclear why this book excludes the colonial powers from this conversation, particularly since U.S. officials feared that their backing of third-world nationalism could alienate the European partners. The fact that the Eisenhower administration was so successful in orchestrating aspects of the Bandung conference, “even those parts over which Washington had no control” was due in part to European efforts and Asian agendas (87). When John Kotelawala, Prime Minister of Ceylon, described the Soviet influence in Eastern Europe as “another form of colonialism”, he angered many at Bandung. However, Oscar Morland, the British ambassador to Indonesia, had assured Kotelawala that the speech was a good strategic move when he stayed overnight at the British embassy.[16] International archives, therefore cast doubt on the notion that the administration averted the threat coming from Bandung “thanks to a well-executed public diplomacy” (80). European colleagues might have made their mark as well.

Second, the book’s methodology makes it difficult to pinpoint the precise role of race in international affairs. Parker highlights how “a series of events–from Bandung to the Suez Crisis to the independence of Ghana” delineated the global race revolution of the postwar era (93). Ghana and Little Rock–this book argues–had put both Africa and race at the forefront of world attention in 1957 (110). It is important to highlight, however, to what extend this was a U.S. assessment of the world. The argument that the image of a “global race revolution” forced U.S. officials to reconsider their approach as well as the notion that decolonization and the race-revolution were seen as interchangeable–“decolonization-cum-race revolution”–is intriguing (169). Nonetheless, liberationist thinkers such as Frantz Fanon or postcolonial statesmen like Ghana’s leader Kwame Nkrumah observed an altogether different process. They were working to reach the opposite goal: the elimination of race as a factor in international relations. Former colonial subjects could only safeguard their political and economic interests if they were taken seriously and not pushed aside as somehow racially unfit for self-government.

Similarly, it is difficult to determine how much Jim Crow laws undermined the U.S. position abroad, especially from the vantage point of U.S. archives. Parker admits that the African resentment of Jim Crow in retrospect can be “overstated” (158). Nonetheless he lists “the black freedom movement in sub-Saharan African and the US South”–alongside the Nonaligned Movement Conference in Belgrade and the Congo Crisis–as one of the “three elements around which a Third World continued to concretize in the early 1960s” (141). However, when postcolonial leaders thought about racial injustice, they first and foremost pointed to Apartheid in South Africa, not civil rights. The archives of Ghana, Kenya, South Africa, Ethiopia, and Senegal do not reveal an obsession with civil rights. These nations–while proudly African–were obsessed with the challenges of development, the ideological boundaries of the new postcolonial world and the defiance of Apartheid South Africa. In Ghana the sense of kinship, felt with Martin Luther King and others, was used primarily as a means to strengthen Nkrumah’s continental agenda of casting Ghana as the most important leader involved with pan-Africanism.

U.S. public diplomacy towards Africa and Asia while focussing on the Third World–I would argue–actually echoed and amplified U.S. sentiments about civil rights at home. Because U.S. officials were so sensitive to the potentially devastating impact of Jim Crow, they overstated the importance of racial segregation while also offering USIA officials an argument to obtain more funding from Congress.

Nonetheless, Hearts, Minds, Voices reveals that a detailed study of those changing U.S. ideas about the world is still important. In contrast with international multi-country histories, Parker’s book is much better able to sketch out changing perceptions and other evolutions within the United States. The French, for instance, admired the use of the radio by USIA and wanted to adopt many of the techniques of the seemingly experienced USIA officials. Parker’s research, however, reveals that USIA was itself only a novice in the area of radio propaganda towards the Third World. It was the Suez crisis that pushed the Americans to increase the use of the radio, since Egyptian leader Gamal Abdel Nasser’s Radio Cairo blared through the receivers of so many people in the Third World (96).

Herein lies the enormous value of Parker’s book. He has taken the study of U.S. public diplomacy beyond the narrow confines of the Cold War and unlocked new conceptual opportunities that force us to think about the impact of public diplomacy, not only abroad but also at home, among foreign policy officials. Public diplomacy should not only be understood as “an international actor’s attempt to conduct its foreign policy by engaging with foreign publics.”[17] As one of the most prominent areas where ideology, perception, and decision-making merged, it also injected different world views into U.S. decision-making, altering how officials viewed the international system. Hearts, Minds, Voices encourages scholars to think more deeply about the “American discovery of that wider postwar non-European world” which came “haltingly and unevenly” rather than as a direct product of the Global cold-war rationale.

There can therefore be little doubt that others will heed Parker’s call to “test” his book’s arguments in third-world archives (14). It will–in line with the official mission of U.S. public diplomats–lead to some interesting conversations.


Jason Parker’s much-anticipated book, Hearts, Minds, Voices, makes a major contribution to the now-extensive literature on U.S. public diplomacy during the Cold War. In the first volume devoted exclusively to examining the messages U.S. officials crafted for what became known as the ‘Third World,’ Parker does more than just recount what information the United States sent where; he argues that superpower public diplomacy played a formative role in what Vijay Prashad calls the “Third World project”—the “imagined community” that coalesced throughout Asia, Africa, and the Arab world as leaders in newly established nations navigated the dynamic process of decolonization while under intense pressure to choose a side in the Cold War (vii).

In an economical 177 pages, Parker examines a diverse array of case studies ranging from Cuba to Korea, India, Ghana, and Egypt, among others. Meanwhile, he also addresses the public diplomacy implications of such major Cold-War milestones as President Harry Truman’s Point Four Program, the Korean War, the Bandung Conference of 1955, the Suez crisis, the Bay of Pigs, the Alliance for Progress, the Congo coup of 1960-1961 and various civil rights flashpoints in the United States from Arkansas to Alabama to Mississippi. He covers a remarkable amount of historical terrain, ranging across the period from 1945 to 1963. The Vietnam War, he argues in his conclusion, represented a new chapter in the history of U.S. public diplomacy, and he thus ends with the Kennedy administration.

The brevity of this volume does come at something of a price, as Parker assumes that the reader is largely familiar with much of the structural history of U.S. public diplomacy—from its roots in the World War II-era to its consolidation in the Truman administration, culminating in the creation of the United States Information Agency (USIA) in 1953, then followed by various twists and turns throughout the Eisenhower and Kennedy administrations. Major legislation, philosophical debates, and most key figures (with the exception of Edward Murrow—the legendary journalist appointed by JFK to run the USIA) are mentioned only in passing, to keep the focus on the Third World. For someone like me, who has written about the inner-workings of the U.S. public diplomacy apparatus, not having to wade through this well-established narrative was much appreciated. But those who do not know the general outlines of this story should probably familiarize themselves with the literature that forms the backdrop to this book before picking it up.[18]

There are several themes that emerge from Parker’s account. First, most people in the ‘Third World’ experienced the Cold War not through military action but through public diplomacy; Second, the commonality of this experience played a major role (in fact, the defining role, Parker argues) in convincing leaders such as Jawaharlal Nehru of India, Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana, and Gamal Abdel Nasser of Egypt to band together in opposition to the aggressive efforts by the United States and the Soviet Union to win hearts and minds in newly independent nations; Third, although it is difficult to measure the precise impact of U.S. information programs in the Third World (at least based solely upon American sources—see below), we know that leaders across the Third World found public diplomacy useful enough to have developed their own mechanisms for communicating with each other; Fourth, these leaders thus joined the global conversation as full participants, on their own terms, often over and against the wishes and interests of the superpowers; Fifth, therefore, third-world peoples and nations were not just objects but subjects in the complicated history of the global Cold War.

The complex theoretical framework Parker deploys here relies heavily on the arguments of Prashad and Odd Arne Westad about the way that the intersection of decolonization and the Cold War essentially created a global alliance between nonaligned nations—represented most vividly in the spirit expressed at the Afro-Asian People’s Conference at Bandung, Indonesia; what Parker adds to this influential argument is a host of fascinating case studies about the role public diplomacy played in a historical development first described by others. [19]

Ironies abound throughout Parker’s account, starting with the most profound irony of all—that the Cold War’s discursive framework of dividing the world into three spheres (West, East, and nonaligned) actually served to create exactly the sort of unified neutralist stance that the superpowers hoped to eliminate through their ideological outreach. At several points—especially in his slyly titled first chapter, “Absent at the Creation”—Parker argues that the most effective U.S. propaganda messages were often the least aggressive ones, as heavy-handedness tended to produce backlash. One such message that backfired was the insistence on referring to Communist expansion as “red colonialism (88-90).” This crudely manufactured epithet only served to repel those who had direct experience with actual colonialism. There was also the U.S. tendency, especially in the wake of the Bandung conference, to appropriate the language of “African and Asian peoples,” while ignoring or excluding the voices of actual people from Africa and Asia (58-59).

An especially notable development—although not, perhaps, an ironic one—was what might be described as the perpetual dilemma of public diplomacy: U.S. deeds often belied the message that policymakers hoped to convey through their words. For example, the 1961 Bay of Pigs fiasco came right on the heels of the announcement of the Alliance for Progress, which was supposed to set the tone for a new kind of U.S. presence in Latin America. Likewise, attempts to trumpet the government’s commitment to ending racism in the United States were constantly undermined by the perpetual news of continuing racial violence. These incidents were problematic for America’s image almost anywhere, but especially so for outreach to people of color in the nonaligned nations of the Third World. Combined with the proclivity of U.S. officials to refer to people in these areas as ‘underdeveloped’ or ‘backward’ (terminology later banned by Murrow in the Kennedy administration), there is a fairly constant theme of U.S. policymakers shooting themselves in the feet.

As Parker acknowledges in several places, his story is told primarily from the perspective of Washington and relies exclusively upon American archival material; his suppositions about the impact of U.S. messages in target countries are gleaned from American reports on the reception of those messages. For this reason, I was less convinced by his most provocative argument: that the most important force driving the formation of the ‘Third World’ was “the injection of Cold War public diplomacy (176).” It is one thing to argue that U.S. public diplomacy played a role in the larger process of third-world identity formation described by Westad, Prashad, and others; that seems inarguable after reading this book. However, in my view, we should be extremely cautious in drawing decisive conclusions about the causes of major events and ideological developments in other countries based solely on American evidence.

Another way to put this, I suppose, is that Parker has offered an interesting hypothesis about an important global phenomenon. Now we need historians steeped in the internal dynamics of the countries he writes about to test that hypothesis. One place to start is with his contention that inhabitants of the non-European world “were on the whole far more likely to encounter a USIA pamphlet than a US Marine (176).” That may be true, but I would guess they were more likely still to encounter an American corporation or cultural artifact than a USIA pamphlet. So, where would economic and cultural forces (not discussed in this book) rank on the spectrum of causes of third-world identity formation?

My only other concern deals with the use of language in a few instances. One of these is not Parker’s fault: We have no good term to describe the nations grouped together during the Cold War as the ‘Third World.’ Parker notes the current proclivity for replacing Third World with ‘Global South’ or ‘non-European world,’ although these terms seem just as dicey in the sense of lumping large, diverse groups of people into a category that still translates roughly as ‘not us.’ In short, Parker does not explain why Global South is any less problematic than Third World, despite the trendiness of substituting the former for the latter. Ultimately, this dilemma is probably unresolvable in a book that argues that a manufactured label became a unifying force and a collective badge of honor.

In contrast, terms that probably should have been excised include the antiquated formulation ‘race relations,’ with its connotation that white racism and racial violence in the United States were simply the product of a disagreement between whites and blacks about how to get along. I also wondered about the occasional cold war-style blanket reference to ‘communists’ in terms of characterizing a certain message or strategy. While there probably were cases where officials in places as diverse as the Soviet Union, Eastern Europe, China, and Southeast Asia echoed each other, my guess is that this kind of conflation obscures more than it reveals.

However, notwithstanding my limited number of reservations, Parker has blown open a door in the historiography of U.S. public diplomacy, displaying a new path for future scholars to follow. Individual case studies will, of course, revise some of his more general conclusions, but Parker has provided an invaluable service by giving us a point of departure for such investigations.


At one point in his book, Hearts, Minds, Voices, Jason Parker cites Edward R. Murrow, President John F. Kennedy’s choice to head the United States Information Agency (USIA), who pointed out “the crying need to improve public understanding of the U.S. abroad” (118). This quote aptly sums up Parker’s focus: the need to understand how the United States sold its image and ideals abroad during an era of increasingly global Cold War. Murrow, like many of the other actors in this book, was driven by the belief that if foreign audiences just could understand what the U.S. stood for–the nebulous, ambiguous ‘Free World’–the Cold War would be won.

Parker’s new book provides a history of U.S. public diplomacy–what he defines as a “multifront media war, launched by the superpowers in pursuit of strategic and psychological gains” (3)–from the Truman through the Kennedy administrations. His work has two important consequences. It expands the historiography of the cold-war propaganda war beyond the confines of Europe, and it further complicates how we understand the Cold War as a truly global phenomenon. Parker’s work lies at the intersection between histories of the Cold War and decolonization. As such, his ultimate argument emphasizes the impact these respective phenomena had on each other, and particularly on the conception of the “Third World.” His work demonstrates ways in which U.S. public diplomacy, especially through the auspices of USIA and the Central Intelligence Agency, helped shape international discussions about the trajectory of Global South nations, as well as ways U.S. actors deliberated about and reacted to conceptions of third-world solidarity and need. In reflecting on U.S.-Global South relations, he identifies three key developments, or themes, that drove U.S. outreach to the decolonizing world, and ultimately international conceptions of the “Third World project”: “nonalignment, underdevelopment, and anti-racist anticolonialism” (177). His book, using a series of case studies, thus focuses on various ways these issues arose in the Third World, as well as various ways in which U.S. actors sought to combat, subvert, or assimilate them.

Hearts, Minds, Voices serves as a potent reminder that the Cold War, as a global phenomenon, was largely a battle for “hearts and minds.” The Cold War’s “hot wars” frequently take center stage for historians considering the superpower conflict beyond Europe, but in reality, as Parker notes, “public diplomacy was the more sustained presence” (3). The minority, not the majority, experienced military action. This does not–and should not–take away from the violence of the global Cold War; indeed, many of the case studies Parker invokes, such as the Korean War, the coup in Guatemala, and the Congo Crisis, involved violent (often bloody) repression. Nevertheless, Parker’s book emphasizes the complicated nature of the Cold War as it spread across continents and clashed with postcolonial state building. In this sense, it sits comfortably alongside studies such as Nick Cullather’s The Hungry World, highlighting the ways in which the rise of the Global South shaped U.S. conceptualizations of international political order and hierarchy, created alternative battlefields of the Cold War, and generally complicated U.S. power projections abroad.[20]

Parker persuasively demonstrates the importance of the propaganda battle in the Third World. He discusses the activities of USIA at length, highlighting initiatives like radio broadcasts and local language pamphlets. Importantly, this analysis complicates conceptions of a “global” Cold War: Parker ultimately argues that, “In the Third World, to an arguably greater extent than in the First or Second, US public diplomacy often seemed to work best when it did least and to be more successful over the long run than the short one” (176). This interpretation offers an alternative temporal and schematic understanding of events of the global Cold War, differentiating timeframes and scales of activities taking place in the Global South from the Global North. Parker perhaps could have expanded upon this point, especially with more specific examples of USIA activities. He tends to present broader overviews of USIA undertakings rather than providing detailed examples. Similarly, further integration of the photos provided in the middle of the book would have been both interesting and useful: these visual representations of USIA activities presumably could have allowed for added insight into U.S. intentions and deeds. Nevertheless, these details would have brought added color to an already interesting narrative rather than having an impact on the book’s overall argument.

The one point in Parker’s analysis where the reader needs to maintain a degree of nuance and reflection is regarding U.S. constructions of Third Worldism. While Parker’s emphasis on nonalignment, anticolonialism, and underdevelopment as key foci of states emerging in the Global South is appropriate and important, the reader must keep in mind Parker’s predominant focus: U.S. actors (and U.S. archives). While U.S. government agents and propaganda actions helped to internationalize discussions of these issues, leaders from the Global South undoubtedly remained the key drivers. To say Global South leaders “responded to the war for their hearts and minds by adding their voices to it” (176-177) is accurate–as Parker demonstrates with Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser’s employment of Radio Cairo–but this should not be interpreted as taking away from Global South agency. Leaders like Nasser, Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana, and Jawaharlal Nehru of India began developing their conceptions of nonalignment and Afro-Asian solidarity before these ideas were approached (or appropriated) by U.S. representatives. That Parker’s book prioritizes U.S. approaches to Third Worldism is neither surprising nor problematic so long as the reader remains aware of his intentions. This is not the book for a reader seeking extensive analysis of third-world reactions to U.S. propaganda; as Parker, himself, notes, “Studies focused on particular non-European areas and drawing on archival sources there are necessary to flesh out the story more fully” (172). As such, Parker’s book serves as a clarion call for further research into the battle for hearts and minds–especially from the perspective of Global South actors.

Hearts, Minds, Voices is ultimately a well-written, thoroughly researched book that furthers historiography about the intersections between decolonization and the bipolar Cold War–what Parker describes as a move from a “binary ideological showdown” to a “multiparty colloquy” (viii). It is important for scholars of U.S. diplomatic history, as well as students of the Global South, as it further nuances our understanding of the ways in which the U.S. government approached, and tried to shape, the Third World. Parker further nuances the ways in which we understand the global Cold War–expanding and complicating the superpower battlefields for hearts and minds–and importantly, he urges readers to reflect on what ‘winning’ the Cold War actually entailed. Given the many shortcomings of U.S. public diplomacy that Parker details, propaganda did not provide the U.S. with a clear upper-hand in this arena. As such, Hearts, Minds, Voices forces us to revisit the Cold War as a conflict and concept and to question whether the global Cold War was ever truly winnable.



I want to begin with thanks to the participants in the roundtable, and to Tom Maddux for organizing it; I am honored to have my book discussed in a venue that has become such a mainstay of our scholarly conversation. I am especially delighted at the interdisciplinary roster of reviewers, whose own adventurous scholarship has taught me much. Indeed, their contributions in print and in person actively influenced the conceptualization and writing of my book over the years. Timothy Barney, Frank Gerits, Justin Hart, and Elizabeth Leake employ their respective expertise to offer insights on the book. I am grateful for the chance to respond to their comments here.

I am inclined to begin with a confession: as I suspect happens to many of us while working on years-long projects, this is not the book I originally set out to write. I wanted back then to make a straightforward contribution to the burgeoning literature on U.S. public diplomacy, by filling in a notable gap within it: simply to reconstruct the story of American Cold-War outreach to the ‘Third World.’ I wanted, in addition, to connect this story to U.S.-Third World relations more broadly, as that literature too had generally overlooked public diplomacy. Along the way, however, thanks to archival findings and serendipitously-timed publications (including Hart’s and Barney’s), my thesis evolved.[21] I discovered a deeply interactive process, whose actors spoke, listened, responded, and ‘performed’ in multiple directions on a crowded and expanding global stage. I argue that the result was the transnational articulation of what Vijay Prashad calls the “Third World Project.”[22] While I seem to have fallen short of persuading Hart and Leake, my hope is that the shortcomings they found will produce a net scholarly gain as historians take on the challenge I sought to issue in the first place.

Although the international and transnational ‘turns’ in the historiography of the last two decades have been salutary and invigorating, they have nonetheless deepened the longstanding historians’ dilemma of serving two proverbial masters. Our concern with high diplomacy, strategy, and power serves one, more traditional, SHAFR audience–but our concern with ‘relations’ impels us also to serve those focused on area studies and non-traditional relations. Satisfying both audiences at once can be a challenge. The book’s original design would have avoided this dilemma by frankly focusing on a U.S. story told from U.S. sources: that is, uncovering what Cold-War Washington sought to say to the world outside Europe, without attention to that world’s response. Those serendipitous publications and archival findings noted above convinced me that a bigger story could be told. The archives revealed that American officials gradually learned the importance of subtle messaging and attentive listening. By the Kennedy years, the United States Information Agency (USIA) was at times reporting as much on what its many competitors’ public diplomacy was saying as on tracking the effectiveness of U.S. messages among audiences abroad. While I agree with Hart and Leake that foreign archives are needed to get a fuller picture of foreign reactions–both popular reception and official public-diplomacy decisions and deployments–I found the U.S. records robust enough to construct the thesis of an interactive, mutually constitutive conversation. ‘Outsider’ archives can no more impart agency to our actors than ‘insider’ ones can–we take as writ that those actors have it regardless of who is doing the reportage–but both can be used to demonstrate it, with varying numbers of grains of salt.[23] At any rate, either or both can start–and, for better or worse, shape–the discussion, and I could not agree more with Hart that “we need historians steeped in the internal dynamics of the countries [Parker] writes about to test [his] hypothesis.”

Nor should such tests be confined to historians. As Barney–a scholar of rhetoric and communication–notes, for a book ultimately centered on rhetorical exchange, Hearts. Minds, Voices is unfortunately short on visual and textual analysis of actual USIA output. “It is,” he writes, “a bit like watching a documentary of a play that focuses on the backstage” rather than the stage itself. Perhaps this does amount to a missed opportunity; I do wish that I had the archival wherewithal to have addressed it. (This too could be a point on which foreign archives come in handy). Although many public-diplomacy collections abroad have not survived, and those that have can be somewhat haphazard in the materials that correspondents preserved, there are likely at least some rich veins out there. But USIA artifacts are often only slightly less scattershot, as U.S. officials (and most historians for that matter) tended to favor and preserve print records, especially newspaper editorials and clippings, over other media. There are, though, valuable USIA photo-, radio-, and film-collections that offer some promise on this front. All of these, to concede Barney’s point and connect it to Hart’s, deserve closer analysis, and I hope that not only cultural historians but rhetoric and media/communications scholars will use them to ‘test that hypothesis.’

Those collections, moreover, have their counterparts in, for example, the British Colonial Film Catalogue, many of which tend to be similarly underutilized by ‘non-cultural’ historians.[24] In my case these materials would also have helped to address concerns that Leake and Gerits raise. Leake finds the book to favor broad U.S.-centered overviews instead of detailed, nuanced examples; Gerits laments the book’s inattention to European public diplomacy in decolonizing areas, correctly noting that in many such places it was a notable presence.[25] To a certain extent I agree with both (as did contemporary American and newly-independent actors alike, according to USIA records), and I regret that I did not do much more than brief mentions and citations. As with other foreign and former-colony archives, these would have helped broaden the book’s scope beyond the ‘changing world as seen from Washington’ scope I employed. But aside from the logistical challenges posed by adding comparable archival depth on those fronts, they also presented something of an apples-oranges factor. For example, London and Paris no less than Washington considered the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) and Agence France Presse (AFP) to be ‘foreign information operations,’ but they were closer to the Associated Press (AP) or United Press International (UPI) than to the USIA in role, practice, and mission. Archival limitations and the risk of blurring the book’s focus dissuaded me from attempting a deeper foray into these factors. But I concur that accounting for all of them undoubtedly belongs in the broader and still-being-written literature of Cold War global media history.

The layers of terms like ‘foreign information operations’ point to a final issue the reviewers raise. As Gerits and Hart note, concepts like ‘race’ and terminology like ‘race relations,’ ‘communists,’ ‘Global South,’ ‘non-European world,’ and the ‘Third World’ itself that are central to the book nonetheless bedevil it throughout. This is not only because they can easily become undifferentiated catchalls; it is also because most of the imaginable substitutes for, say, “Third World” are, as Hart writes, “just as dicey in [creating] a category that still translates roughly as ‘not us.’” I agree that this is “probably unresolvable”–but with the crucial caveat that the “manufactured label [that] became a unifying force” was not in this moment an imposed one. It was agreed upon by, so to speak, both ‘us’ and ‘not us.’ This underscores the agency of the rising actors, even as it acknowledges the fickle and temporal amorphousness of the concepts and terms in question. Historicizing them is, in a sense, the book’s principal mission; defining them its principal curse. Their fluidity and imprecision, to say nothing of their ‘baggage’ at different points in time, are in a way microcosms of that central purpose: to trace the evolving conversation–and multivalent contestation–that shaped the postwar order.

I close by reiterating my gratitude to the reviewers for their time, attention, and stimulating commentary. To spark such insights and exchange–in Gerits’s gratifying phrase, to have “unlocked new conceptual opportunities”–is exactly what one hopes for in setting out to write a book. I thank my colleagues and the organizers for the chance to have the discussion, and I look forward to its continuation.


[1] Hans N. Tuch, Communicating with the World: U.S. Public Diplomacy Overseas (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1990); Wilson P. Dizard, Inventing Public Diplomacy: The Story of the U.S. Information Agency (Boulder: Lynne Rienner, 2004).

[2] Elisabeth Leake, The Defiant Border: The Afghan-Pakistan Borderlands in the Era of Decolonization, 1936-1965 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2016).

[3] For an example of this work see Frank Gerits, “An International Approach to The Cultural Cold War: French Public Diplomacy towards Africa (1945-1965),” Zeitenblicke 12:1 (Special Issue : ‘Current Historiographical Research at the European University Institute,’ April 2013).

[4] Justin Hart, Empire of Ideas (New York: Oxford University Press, 2013).

[5] Timothy Barney, Mapping the Cold War: Cartography and the Framing of America’s International Power (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2015).

[6] Nicholas J. Cull, The Cold War and the United States Information Agency: American Propaganda and Public Diplomacy, 1945-1989 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008).

[7] United Nations Regional Cartographic Conference for Asia and the Far East. Official Report of the United Nations Regional Cartographic Conference for Asia and the Far East, Mussoorie, India, 15-28 February 1955. New York: United Nations, 1955.

[8] Mary L. Dudziak, Cold War Civil Rights: Race and the Image of American Democracy (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2001).

[9] Martin J. Medhurst, “Rhetoric and Cold War: A Strategic Approach,” in Cold War Rhetoric: Strategy, Metaphor, and Ideology, eds. Martin J. Medhurst, Robert L. Ivie, Philip Wander, and Robert L. Scott (East Lansing: Michigan State University Press, 1997), 19.

[10] Odd Arne Westad, The Global Cold War (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006).

[11] Odd Arne Westad, The Global Cold War: Third World Interventions and the Making of Our Times (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005).

[12] Walter L. Hixson, Parting the Curtain: Propaganda, Culture, and the Cold War, 1945-1961 (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 1997), 16.

[13] Thomas Borstelmann, The Cold War and the Color Line: American Race Relations in the Global Arena (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2003), 116.

[14] Kenneth Osgood, “Words and Deeds: Race, Colonialism, and Eisenhower's Propaganda War in the Third World,” in Kathryn Statler and Andrew L. Johns, eds., The Eisenhower Administration, the Third World, and the Globalization of the Cold War (Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield, 2006), 15.

[15] Thomas Bender, A Nation among Nations: America’s Place in World History, 1st ed. (New York: Hill and Wang, 2006).

[16] Frank Gerits, “Bandung as the Call for a Better Development Project: US, British, French and Gold Coast Perceptions of the Afro-Asian Conference (1955),” Cold War History 16:3 (2016): 255-272.

[17] Nicholas J. Cull, The Cold War and the United States Information Agency: American Propaganda and Public Diplomacy, 1945-1989 (Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press, 2009), x.

[18] Among the staples of the literature on cold-war public diplomacy are: Nicholas John Cull, The Cold War and the United States Information Agency: American Propaganda and Public Diplomacy, 1945-1989 (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2008); Justin Hart, Empire of Ideas: The Origins of Public Diplomacy and the Transformation of U.S. Foreign Policy (New York: Oxford University Press, 2013); Laura Ann Belmonte, Selling the American Way: U.S. Propaganda and the Cold War (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2008); Walter L. Hixson, Parting the Curtain: Propaganda, Culture, and the Cold War, 1945-1961 (New York: St. Martin’s, 1997); and Kenneth Osgood, Total Cold War: Eisenhower’s Secret Propaganda Battle at Home and Abroad (Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 2006).

[19] Vijay Prashad, The Darker Nations: A People’s History of the Third World (New York: New Press, 2008); and Odd Arne Westad, The Global Cold War: Third World Interventions and the Making of Our Times (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2005).

[20] Nick Cullather, The Hungry World: America’s Cold War Battle against Poverty in Asia (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2013).

[21] In particular, Hart’s Empire of Ideas: The Origins of Public Diplomacy and the Transformation of U.S. Foreign Policy (New York: Oxford University Press, 2013) and Barney’s, Mapping the Cold War: Cartography and the Framing of America’s International Power (Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 2015) ranked high in ‘serendipity.’ Also in this category was Odd Arne Westad, The Global Cold War: Third World Interventions and the Making of Our Times (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2005); Nicholas Cull, The Cold War and the United States Information Agency: American Propaganda and Public Diplomacy, 1945-1989 (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2008); and Erez Manela, The Wilsonian Moment: Self-Determination and the International Origins of Anticolonialism (New York: Oxford University Press, 2007).

[22] Vijay Prashad, The Darker Nations: A People’s History of the Third World (New York: New Press, 2008). See also Pankaj Mishra, From the Ruins of Empire: The Intellectuals Who Remade Asia (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2012).

[23] And with backing from secondary works: see e.g. Gregg Brasinzky, Winning the Third World: Sino-American Rivalry During the Cold War (Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 2017); James R. Brennan, “Radio Cairo and the Decolonization of East Africa, 1953-1964,” in Christopher Lee, ed., Making a World After Empire: The Bandung Moment and its Political Afterlives (Athens: Ohio University Press, 2010); James Vaughan, The Failure of American and British Propaganda in the Arab Middle East, 1945-1957: Unconquerable Minds (London: Palgave, 2005); Richard Boyd, Broadcasting in the Arab World (New York: Wiley, 1999).

[24] “Colonial Film: Moving Images of the British Empire” (website), http://www.colonialfilm.org.uk.

[25] In addition to Gerits’ work, see also Alban Webb, London Calling: Britain, the BBC World Service and the Cold War (London: Bloomsbury, 2015).