November 21, 2011

I’ve now been working on the first chapter of my project for the past several weeks, and it’s evolved quite significantly. What began as a short narrative opening, creating a snapshot of the Phillips leak, has developed into a nearly-20 page paper that incorporates narrative, analysis, and historiography. While I still have to do my final round of editing and revising, it’s very encouraging to see a tangible product of what I’ve been working on for the past several months.

Working on this introductory chapter has also highlighted areas of scholarship that I want to become more comfortable in as I continue to work on my thesis.  Though I’ve been able to do some initial research in the body of work that addressing the development of ethnic lobbies in the United States (primarily utilizing the work of Alexander DeConde and Melvin Small), I can see how a more thorough background in the subject area can enhance my analysis of the India Lobby. I also plan to become more versed in the history of specific lobbies I might draw comparisons to, especially the China Lobby and Israel Lobby.

After I finish polishing my first chapter, my most immediate concern is the December 1 presentation in front of the department. Other future plans include research trips to the Library of Congress for Walter White’s correspondence with J.J. Singh (the library currently claims that these films were shipped to me on 11/9, but I have get to see any proof of this), as well as Yale University, which owns the National Committee for India’s Independence’s monthly publication, Voice of India, which I hope to compare to India Today.

November 8, 2011

For the past two weeks, I’ve been spending most of my time working on the draft of the paper I will present on December 1. Here is the latest version of that paper.  Once again, I feel like I’m making progress with the narrative opening, though it still needs tweaking.  I’ve added an organizing paragraph in between the narrative and the section which gives the background on the Lobby. In this paragraph I’ve raised the questions I plan on addressing in the course of my project, but right now my thesis seems more like a proposal than a thesis statement to me. The part of my paper that I’m the happiest with right now is the section that defines India Lobby and its members. I’ve also expanded this section significantly since my last draft. Right now I have a tentative start to a concluding section, but I’m not sure I like the direction I’m headed in. I have finally tracked down the FDR quote about public opinion in FRUS and have included a large portion of it in this paragraph. (Should I make the quote an appendix because it’s so long?) I then started to go into my foreign-lobby research, which is where I’m currently stuck.

My other focus these past 2 weeks has been my foreign lobby research. I currently have extensive notes going, though I have yet to format them into blog posts. Most of my recent research has been more in the realm of political science and sociology rather than history, and so I’m getting more of a theoretical layout of the topic. Some of my key sources so far include:

Thomas Ambrosio, ed., Ethnic Identity Groups and U.S. Foreign Policy, (Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers, 2002)

Mohammed E. Ahari, ed., Ethnic Groups and U.S. Foreign Policy (New York: Greenwood Press, 1987).

Alexander DeConde, Ethnicity, Race, and American Foreign Policy (Boston: Northeastern University Press, 1992).

Sanjeev Khagram, Manish Desai, Jason Varughese, “Seen, Rich, but Unheard? The Politics of Asian Indians in the United States,” in Asian American and Politics: Perspectives, Experiences, and Prospects, Gordon Chang, ed., (Washington, DC: Woodrow Wilson Center Press, 2000): 258-284.

Joseph P. O’Grady, The Immigrants’ Influence on Wilson’s Peace Politics (Lexington, KY: University of Kentucky Press, 1967).

Gaddis Smith, American Diplomacy during the Second World War, 1941-1945 2nd ed. (New York: Random House Inc., 1985)

Tony Smith, Foreign Attachments: The Power of Ethnic Groups in the Making of American Foreign Policy (Cambridge, MA: 2000).

John Snetsinger, “Race and Ethnicity” in Encylopedia of American Foreign Policy 2nd edition, ed. Alexander DeConde, vol. 3: 289-311.

One interesting question that my research has raised is the potential comparison between Wilson’s 14 Points, WWI ethnic lobbies, and the idea of self-determination and the Atlantic Charter, WWII lobbies, and decolonization. I haven’t had a chance to ponder this further.

In other news, I’ve added indexes to the categories on my blog, though I’m not sure if I’ve truly made the posts “sticky.” The latest on the NAACP microfilm is: the Library of Congress apparently denied my request to borrow their film though they didn’t give a reason. My friend in inter-library loan and I think we’ve found up to possibly 4 other libraries in the U.S. that claim to have the same film, so that’s what I’m trying to acquire currently.

1917 Espionage Act

Chapter 30, Title 1, 40, Stat. 217

  • Since the 1798 Sedition Act expired, the United States had no federal legislative that address seditious activity.
  • The act primarily focused towards protection of military secrets
  • 1918 amendment, “Sedition Act”
  • Upheld in three Supreme Court Cases: Schenek v. United States (1919), Frohwerk v. United States (1919), Debs v. United States (1919)
  • Charles Warren, primary author
  • Submitted to Congress in April, passed in June; months of debate focused on meaning of the first amendment

Title 1, Section 3:

“Whoever, when the United States is at war, shall willfully make or convey false reports or false statements with intent to interfere with the operation or success of the military or naval forces of the United States or to promote the success of its enemies and whoever, when the United States is at war, shall willfully cause or attempt to cause insubordination, disloyalty, mutiny, or refusal of duty, in the military or naval forces of the United States, or shall willfully obstruct the recruiting or enlistment service of the United States, to the injury of the service or of the United States, shall be punished by a fine of not more than $ 10,000 or imprisonment for not more than twenty years, or both”

Rabban, David M. “The Emergence of Modern First Amendment Doctrine.” University of Chicago Law Review 50 (fall) 1983.

Stone, Geoffrey R. “Judge Learned Hand and the Espionage Act of 1917: A Mystery Unraveled.” University of Chicago Law Review 70 (winter) 2003.

United States, Statutes at Large, Washington, D.C., 1918, Vol. XL, pp 553 ff.
A portion of the amendment to Section 3 of the Espionage Act of June 15, 1917.

Sedition Act, 1918
From The United States Statutes at Large, V. 40. (April 1917-March 1919). Washington: Government Printing Office, 1919. 553-554.

NB: Both the Espionage Act and the Sedition Act (passed, 1918) were repealed in 1921, but major portions of the Espionage Act remain part of U.S. law (18 USC 793, 794) and form the legal basis for law concerning most classified information.. The “Espionage Act” and the “Sedition Act” however as named, no longer exist.

The U.S. Sedition Act

Immigration Data

From Sanjeev Khagram, "Seen, Rich, but Unheard?" in Asian American and Politics: Perspectives, Experiences, and Prospects, Gordon Chang, ed., (Washington, DC: Woodrow Wilson Center Press, 2000): 267


From Sanjeev Khagram, "Seen, Rich, but Unheard?" in Asian American and Politics: Perspectives, Experiences, and Prospects, Gordon Chang, ed., (Washington, DC: Woodrow Wilson Center Press, 2000): 269