Voices out of the past.
February 11, 2005 9:43 AM   Subscribe

After the Day of Infamy: "Man-on-the-Street" Interviews Following the Attack on Pearl Harbor
presents approximately twelve hours of opinions recorded in the days and months following the bombing of Pearl Harbor from more than two hundred individuals in cities and towns across the United States. On December 8, 1941..., Alan Lomax... sent a telegram to fieldworkers in ten different localities across the United States, asking them to collect "man-on-the-street" reactions of ordinary Americans to the bombing of Pearl Harbor and the subsequent declaration of war by the United States. A second series of interviews, called "Dear Mr. President," was recorded in January and February 1942. Both collections are included in this presentation. They feature a wide diversity of opinion concerning the war and other social and political issues of the day, such as racial prejudice and labor disputes. The result is a portrait of everyday life in America as the United States entered World War II.
Try the Subject index as a point of entry; there are transcripts as well as audio. (Via Plep.)
posted by languagehat (10 comments total)
Wow. Pete Seeger's in there.

This is awesome. Thanks!
posted by koeselitz at 10:19 AM on February 11, 2005

Moreso every day it is proven, with science, that Alan Lomax is one of the great Americans of the 20th century. This stuff is great! I wonder if we'll start to hear a slew of remixes based on these recordings?
posted by robocop is bleeding at 10:21 AM on February 11, 2005

This is unbelievably well collected. I'm very impressed.
posted by painquale at 10:30 AM on February 11, 2005

Alan Lomax should be lauded as an American Treasure. Why there are not statues of him and buildings named after him is a mystery to me.

Awesome post.
posted by spicynuts at 10:37 AM on February 11, 2005


Awesome find, languagehat.
posted by dhoyt at 10:51 AM on February 11, 2005

Tell me more about Alan Lomax... What a wonderful sound collection.

I like the quotes, from the young army guys - Q: What do they say you're fighting for? A: "Democracy, I guess... isn't that what they always say?" :D :D
posted by anthill at 10:54 AM on February 11, 2005

Wow. I love stuff like this.
posted by thirdparty at 12:03 PM on February 11, 2005


Paul Martin: You don't think then that it will be wise nor necessary for the United States to police the world, so to speak, after this war is over?

Mike Fox: Why no, I think that's going back to the Dark Ages.

posted by Drexen at 12:41 PM on February 11, 2005

[This Is Really Fucking Awesome]
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 1:25 PM on February 11, 2005

Gorgeous archive. Thanks for the post.
posted by juggernautco at 6:28 PM on February 11, 2005

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