27 September 1941

27 September 1941


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27 September 1941

September 1941

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Occupied Europe

Heydrich replaced Neurath as Protector of Bohemia



Meaning of the Moves for CIO-AFL Unification

From The Militant, Vol. V No. 39, 27 September 1941, p.ك.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’ Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL).

The coming annual conventions of the AFL (Seattle, October 6) and the CIO (Detroit, November 17) will again bring to the forefront the question of trade union unity.

Militant trade unionists, who want to work out an answer to the problem of unity not on the basis of an abstract formula or ideal but on the basis of the concrete interests of the working class, will profit from a study of the positions taken by the different groups today advocating CIO-AFL unity.

Such an analysis will demonstrate that the slogan of unity as such is not progressive today, and that it is being used as the cover for extremely reactionary and conservative forces operating against the best interests of the labor movement.
 

Roosevelt’s Aims

Why, for example, is the Roosevelt administration so concerned about unification of the two union groups? Certainly not to enable the unions to better fight for improvement of labor’s conditions and protection of labor’s rights, because more than ever that fight in these days has to be directed against the efforts of the government as well as the bosses.

Roosevelt’s main interest in the unions, both craft and industrial, is to tie them to the war program, to get them in the interests of “national defense” to “make sacrifices,” to persuade them to give up many of their hard-won rights for the sake of “national unity.” A divided labor movement, entailing competition and a struggle for hegemony that leads to increased organizational activity, makes Roosevelt’s task more difficult. Roosevelt wants “peace” between the two labor federations as a prelude to “peace” between labor and the capitalists.

It is not hard to see that unity on the basis of Roosevelt’s program will reduce, not increase, labor’s strength.
 

The AFL Conditions

By and large, the bureaucrats of the AFL Council hold the same position today as they held a year ago when they expressed their willingness for “unity.” But the unity they want is the kind that will give craft unionism the domination of the unified movement and leave the industrial unions at the mercy of those who opposed their creation.

Such a unification as the AFL Council wants would be a blow to all of labor, for it would not only weaken the strongest unions in the labor movement, but it would encourage the bosses to go after the remainder, craft or industrial. One of the progressive consequences of the AFL-CIO split was that, in the wake of the pro-union spirit engendered by the organizational gains of the CIO union’s, the AFL was also able to add many new members. The dismemberment of the unions in the mass industries by the craft union leaders of the AFL might easily lead to the destruction by the bosses of the craft unions built near and around them.
 

What the Hillmanites Want

The Hillmanites in the CIO also support moves toward unification. They are not interested in seeing that the craft unionists become the dominant force – for they would prefer themselves in the dominant role, of course – but they are not worried about the prospect either. They feel that they could easily come to terms with the Greens and Wolls. Like Roosevelt, their main concern is in tying the unions in with the government.

At last year’s CIO convention the Hillmanites were the chief advocates of “resuming unity negotiations.” Although Hillman’s proposal was decisively rejected by the Lewis forces at the convention, and although Hillman himself was the object of an invitation to get out of the CIO and go back to the AFL by himself, he has chosen to keep his followers in the ClO. The reason for this was twofold. First of all, his use to the administration and the war machine rests on the idea that he “represents” the dynamic section of the union movement, the CIO. If he returned to the AFL, he would quickly sink to the status of another Dubinsky, a captive of the AFL Executive Council.

Secondly, Hillman has kept his forces in the CIO because it is there that he can be of most service to the administration in its drive to unify the unions on the basis of support of the war.

In the year since the Atlantic City convention, the Hillmanites have been “boring from within” the CIO, and it is unquestionable that they have made considerable headway since November 1940.
 

Role of the Stalinists

Last year the Stalinists fully backed the Lewis position against any unity proposals that would hot guarantee the victory of industrial unionism.

This year, however, they loudly proclaim, “conditions have changed.” Now they give unqualified support to the Roosevelt war program. Instead of collaborating with John L. Lewis against Hillmanites in the unions, the Stalinists have declared war against Lewis, although he is pursuing more or less the same union policies today as a year ago.

Criticism of Green and Hillman has entirely disappeared from the Daily Worker. The Stalinists have adopted the AFL Executive Council’s formula on “strikes and national defense,” namely, that unions must retain their right to strike but they must not utilize that right. (Daily Worker, Sept. 20)

The Stalinists are all-out for labor unification today. But unification on the basis of their program will be n different and no better than unification around the Roosevelt, Green and Hillman proposals.
 

Lewis’ Stand on Unification

The Lewis group is the only major force that shows any signs of resisting a unification that will put the craft unions in the saddle and make the labor movement wholly subservient to the war program.

Events of the last year have shown how correct was the decision of the CIO last November in voting down Hillman’s proposal. How many of labor’s gains in 1941 – the organization of Ford, Bethlehem, etc. – won through militant action, would have been achieved if the iron hand of the AFL bureaucracy were dominant in a unified labor movement? Wouldn’t much of the anti-labor legislation defeated by the CIO this year have become law by this time if the Hillman-Green tendency led the whole labor movement?
 

The Job for Militants

Of course, continuation of the split in the labor movement has its negative as well as its positive features, and a unification of the labor movement oft the proper basis is desirable. But class-conscious workers must never lose sight of the fact that a unification on the basis of the Roosevelt-AFL-Hillman-Stalinist terms can prove more harmful than no unification at all under present conditions.

To the demagogic and reactionaary plans of the Roosevelt war bloc in the unions, the workers must counterpose the struggle for unification of the labor movement on the basis of undisputed recognition of the victory of industrial unionism.


Focus on the Hero

While the first two acts of the film paint a beautiful tapestry of York’s upbringing in the backwoods of Tennessee, the final act showcases his extraordinary honor and courage in the face of adversity on the battlefields and in the trenches of the Great War.

For a film set in 1941, “Sergeant York” has an exceptional level of character development that enables it to transcend mere propaganda. Through Hawks’s more-than-capable guidance, Cooper is set free to deliver one of his finest, most compelling performances, buttressed further by Wycherly as his stalwart, ever-supportive mother. The excellent supporting cast carry their own weight without being too obtrusive.

“Sergeant York” is a deeply moving film that should inspire even the most ardent of pessimists out there. Its sincere dedication to unusual heroism, patriotism, and selflessness is something that should be witnessed. Be warned: Bring a handkerchief or box of tissues to wipe away all of those tears.

‘Sergeant York’
Director: Howard Hawks
Starring: Gary Cooper, Walter Brennan, Margaret Wycherly, Joan Leslie
Not Rated
Running Time: 2 hours, 14 minutes
Release Date: Sept. 27, 1941 (USA)
Rated: 5 stars out of 5


Randolph Calls for a New Negro Movement

From The Militant, Vol. V No. 39, 27 September 1941, p.ل.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’ Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL).

In an article printed in a number of Negro newspapers last week, A. Philip Randolph, president of the AFL Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters and national director of the March on Washington Committee, called for the organization of a million Negroes to fight against racial discrimination.

“Negroes,” said Randolph, “must no longer think in terms of little units, or small maneuvers. To this end, the March on Washington committees are out to enlist-a million Negroes to increase the striking and driving power of the Negro masses for their rights.

“Recent history in international and national affairs shows that it is not enough to be right. You must also be powerful. You must also build the machine with which to work and fight for justice.

“It was just, proper and right for the President to issue an Executive Order in the early stages of discriminations in national defense on account of race, color, religion or national origin as it was proper and just, June 25. But it never happened until the March on Washington movement was launched .

“A million Negroes speaking at one time behind one vital issue will shake America and is certain to get a serious and respectful hearing.

“Let the Negro masses speak through a million voices.”

Randolph does not indicate whether he is just talking about something that would be nice or whether he plans to go ahead and take concrete steps to actually organize a Negro mass movement.

At any rate, his actual proposals are quite vague. All he says about the organizational work involved in creating such a movement is that it would be “an herculean task” and that “it perhaps will not proceed with a blitzkrieg tempo” because the March on Washington committee “does not have a quarter” and therefore the work will have to be carried forward “with volunteer workers.”

No Negro worker will deny the need for a mass organization that will fight for equality. With production expanding, with talk about democracy increasing on all sides, with their youth being called on to undergo military training, the Negro masses are ready to conduct a vigorous fight for their rights.

Money is not the decisive question. Plenty of organizations with finances cannot win the allegiance of the masses – and for a very good reason. They don’t have the proper program, they don’t have the proper internal structure. These are the [some text appears to be missing here]

“Let the Negro masses speak through a million voices,” says Randolph. Yes, but what words Randolph offer as the program for this organization? Is it going to make deals with the powers that be and call off militant action in return for promises, as the March on Washington Committee did last June? Is it going [some text appears to be missing here]

Is the organization going to be democratically run? Are the masses going to have the decisive word about the organization’s policies? Or is the organization to be controlled and directed from the top with a small committee not only making day-to-day organizational decisions but also the vital and fundamental decisions of policy?

All that Randolph has said on the question is this: “In it the organization proposed) every Negro will count. The highest will be as low as the lowest and the lowest will be as high as the highest.” This may be the answer in Randolph’s own style. But then again it may only be an evasion of the question.

But Randolph has never asked the masses to decide anything of importance – the program of the March on Washington, the right to decide whether the March should have been called off or carried through, the right to decide on the personnel on the national committee “announced” by Randolph after the March was called off.

Such a handling of questions is not only dangerous for the future of the proposed organization, but it also tends to hold back the initial steps. For many of the local committees will think:

“If Randolph doesn’t let us decide what our organization should do on a question like this, what reason do we have to believe that we will be permitted to decide policy later on? What guarantees then will be have against being sold down the river by a leadership over which we have no control?”

We Trotskyists do not hesitate for a moment to criticize the March on Washington Committee and its shortcomings when our criticisms can serve the interests of the masses. We feel all the more free to do so because from the start we gave wholehearted support to the progressive acts of the movement and defended it at each stage of its development against those forces which attacked it for being “too militant.”

Today we make our criticisms of Randolph’s call not because we are opposed to the creation of a Negro mass movement but because we are in favor of such a movement and want to see. it grow into a powerful force against Jim Crowism. We urge all advanced and class conscious Negroes to join this movement, to support and build it, and to try to make it the kind of organization that will win real successes for the masses. In addition, we urge the Negro people to be vigilant within the organization against any harmful policies or procedure.

If Randolph’s procedure in calling off the March last June had been correct – and we said before and after it happened that no greater mistake could be made – then he would not have to be coming before the people today. and saying that a million Negroes are needed to be “certain to get a serious and respectful hearing” from the ruling class and its government.

We warned that nothing could come of deals with the Jim Crow forces, that Negroes must organize to fight them all the way through. Randolph’s article is proof that we were correct, that his past procedure was incorrect and inadequate.

Negroes can learn much from the lessons of that March, and it is their duty to do so if they want within the proposed organization to avoid the mistakes its leaders have made in the past.


Executions carried out by the Einsatzkommando 3 on Saturday 27 September 1941

On Saturday 27 September 1941 or somewhere around this date, Einsatzcommando 3 murdered 989 Jewish men and 1636 Jewish women. Also 821 Jewish children were killed. A total of 3446 persons died on this location in Ei&scaroni&scaronkės.

Source of this record: The so-called Jäger Report (full title: Complete tabulation of executions carried out in the Einsatzkommando 3 zone up to December 1, 1941) was written on 1 December 1941 by Karl Jäger, commander of Einsatzkommando 3 (EK 3), a killing unit of Einsatzgruppe A which was attached to Army Group North during the Operation Barbarossa. It is the most detailed and precise surviving chronicle of the activities of one individual Einsatzkommando, and a key record documenting the Holocaust in Lithuania as well as in Latvia and Belarus.

The photo is most probably not in this area but an example of German execution units and their work.


This Day in Susanville History – September 27th, 1941

Approximately $1200 has been raised by F. M. Moses and T. K Oliver, heads of the Lassen high school and junior college band for the purchase of seventy-three new uniforms.

One-half of the amount necessary for the outfits was contributed by the high school board while the rest of the amount has been made up from donations by service organizations and the city council.

Ground has been broken for a new $20,000 shop and vocational training building for the Lassen High School and Junior College under the direction of Roy Cochrane, recently from Hollywood, now a member of the faculty of the two schools. Dean & Dean of Sacramento are the architects for the structure.

Trustees of the school last night denied the senior class of 86 students the right to enjoy the annual “senior sneak” this year.

Chairman James A. Brown declared it would disrupt the entire school to send the class and its advisors and faculty away on a secret day’s jaunt. Most of the teachers handle several classes.

We are always looking for new pictures to preserve and share in our historical photo collection and we would love to see yours.Your picture will be added to our digital archive for future use and we will make sure you receive credit whenever possible. Email your contribution along with your name and a short description of what you’ve sent to [email protected] A digital copy of every submission will also be donated to the Lassen Historical Society for preservation in their files.

Don’t know how to scan your photos?

Our friends at the UPS Store have offered to professionally scan your vintage photo submissions for free. Just stop by 2850 Main Street in Susanville and they will be happy to help you.


Stamford American (Stamford, Tex.), Vol. 18, No. 27, Ed. 1 Friday, September 26, 1941

Weekly newspaper from Stamford, Texas that includes local, state, and national news along with advertising.

Physical Description

eight pages : ill. page 22 x 18 in. Digitized from 35 mm. microfilm.

Creation Information

Context

This newspaper is part of the collection entitled: Stamford Area Newspaper Collection and was provided by the Stamford Carnegie Library to The Portal to Texas History, a digital repository hosted by the UNT Libraries. It has been viewed 13 times. More information about this issue can be viewed below.

People and organizations associated with either the creation of this newspaper or its content.

Editor

Audiences

Check out our Resources for Educators Site! We've identified this newspaper as a primary source within our collections. Researchers, educators, and students may find this issue useful in their work.

Provided By

Stamford Carnegie Library

Over 100 years since its inception, The Stamford Carnegie Library still holds true to the foundations of Andrew Carnegie’s original vision and beyond, merging traditional principles of enlightenment with the modern terms of today. The Library gives residents of all ages free and equal access to a secure and dynamic environment encouraging lifelong learning.


27 September 1941 - History

MP3 File
Today in 1941, the cargo ship SS Henry Patrick was launched along with 13 sister ships during a Presidential launching ceremony in Baltimore, Maryland. These 14 vessels were the first Liberty ships, a class of cheap and quick-to-build cargo haulers that helped to carry the industrial output of wartime America to the battlefields of Europe and the Pacific.

The Liberty ships were 441.5' long and had a 57' beam. When fully loaded, they required almost 28 feet of water to stay afloat. Their top speed was 11.5 knots or almost 13 miles an hour. They could carry 9,100 tons of cargo, but many of the ships carried more than that on a regular basis.

The basic design for the Liberty ship dates to 1940, when the British government ordered 60 ships to help replace the merchant ships lost during the first year of World War Two. These were called Ocean-class ships and were built at American shipyards. They used coal instead of oil because while Great Britain had many coal mines, the country had no indigenous oil fields. The first of these vessels, Ocean Vanguard, was launched in August, 1941.

The United States Maritime Commission took the Ocean-class design and modified it so the ships could be built faster and for less money. The biggest design change was the decision to weld sections of the ship together instead of using rivets. Riveting accounted for as much as one-third of the labor cost of building a cargo ship, so the monetary savings for a fleet of Liberty ships was significant. The Liberty design also used oil for fuel instead of coal as the Ocean-class ships used.

A group of engineering and construction concerns known as the Six Companies were given a contract from the federal government to build the first Liberty Ships. Henry J. Kaiser, an industrialist and the head of the Six Companies, studied the automotive industry and came to the conclusion that large ships could be built in much the same way as automobiles. This assembly line method was used by all the shipyards which built Liberty ships and was so successful that, by the end of the war, a ship went from a stack of steel plates to a finished product in just 30 days. Over the course of the war, the average construction time was 42 days.

During 1941, the US government increased the number of ships that were to be delivered to Great Britain from the original 60 to 200, then 306. 117 of these would be LIberty ships. By the time the United States entered the Second World War in December, 1941, the Six Companies' shipyards had much experience with the cargo ships' design. In all, sixteen American shipyards on both coasts built the Liberty ships 2,751 of them were built between 1941 and 1945. The ships were initially named after famous Americans, starting with the signers of the Declaration of Independence. However, any group which raised $2 million worth of war bonds could name a ship (within reason, of course). This is how the US government came to own ships named SS Stage Door Canteen and SS U.S.O

Several of the Liberty ships became famous. The Robert E. Peary was built in 4 days, 15.5 hours after her keel was laid, a one-time publicity stunt that was never repeated. The SS Stephen Hopkins used her relatively small 4" deck gun to sink a German commerce raider in a running gun battle in 1942. She was the first American ship to sink a German surface combatant during the war. The SS Richard Montgomery became and remains infamous to this day, her wreck lies off the coast of Kent in southeast England with nearly 1,500 tons of explosives still on board.

The Liberty ships were built quickly and often by an inexperienced workforce. Because of this, plus the fact that joints were welded instead of riveted coupled with a lack of knowledge about what causes brittle fracture to occur, many of the ships developed hull and deck cracks. 19 of the class broke in half and sank during the war.

A majority of the Liberty ships survived the war and became the backbone of the world's cargo fleet. Today, only two operational ships remain: the SS John W. Brown and the SS Jeremiah O'Brien. Both are sailing museum ships.


Production History

There are two productions of Brecht’s Mother Courage and Her Children (Mutter Courage und ihre Kinder) that are frequently considered the “original” production. Chronologically, the first production took place in 1941 in Zurich, after Brecht moved back to Europe from the United States in the hopes of returning to his homeland of Germany. The second, and far more famous production, took place in 1945 in Berlin. This production, staring actress Helene Weigel, is iconic. It was produced by Brecht’s own company, The Berliner Ensemble. Weigel, dressed in rags, pulled a rickety wooden cart in circles around the stage, and

The 1945 Original Production, with the setting caption hanging above

Brechtian captions were displayed in banners above the stage. This production is the instantiation of Brecht’s epic, political theatre, as it is an obvious reaction and commentary on Nazi Germany and wartime Europe.

(European newspapers mentions of these productions: http://zeitungsarchiv.nzz.ch/neue-zuercher-zeitung-vom-28-04-1941-seite-e4.html?hint=3898610http://zeitungsarchiv.nzz.ch/neue-zuercher-zeitung-vom-26-11-1945-seite-a4.html?hint=3898611)

In 2006, George C. Wolfe directed a revival of Mother Courage in New York with The Public Theatre. This production starred Meryl Streep as Courage, with Kevin Kline as the Cook. It was performed at the Delacorte Theater, an outdoor arena in Central Park. For this production, Wolfe chose to use Tony Kushner’s new English translation. This translation aimed at a more colloquial rendition of the piece, using extra profanity, rhyme, and modernized language in order to better engage modern audiences with Brecht’s challenging work. The Brechtian songs in this production were set to an original score by Jeanine Tesori. The set pieces were made from weathered wood, and the setting captions, as in the 1945 production, were presented in banners above the action, though this time as projections. All-in-all, this production was set in a non-specific time and space, though its themes resonated loudly with the political war climate of 2006.

The New York Times’ Ben Brantley, reviewer of this production, was unimpressed by this interpretation. He asserts that the production on the whole, and Streep’s performance specifically, was lacking in cohesion and integrity to Brecht’s masterpiece. He comments that Streep’s rendition of Courage was sloppy and unconvincing, saying that she “emphasizes the gallows vaudeville of a play that has an all-too-reverberant relevance in these days of war.” According to Brantley his unclear, incohesive, and off-target tone was an overwhelming characteristic of this production, with its heavy reliance on comedy and spectacle and neglect of verfremdungseffekt and complexity. Brantley did feel, however, that Streep, and the whole production, shined in the moments of song, remarking that Streep could easily pursue a career in Broadway musical if she so chose. Overall, Brantley was unsatisfied with the incongruous elements of this production, from the design aspects through to the performance and the tone of the piece.

New York Magazine’s Jeremy McCarter also commented on the peculiar and mistaken casting of Streep, again citing her lack of solemnity, composure, and grace. McCarter, too, was awed and disappointed by the level of spectacle and “showbiz” of this production, with its enormous flames and explosions, and large ensemble. He noted that the outdoor stage made the performance atmosphere unpredictable. McCarter was dissatisfied by Kushner’s translation, claiming that it was verbally challenging and confusing, as well as unnecessarily vulgar and simple.

The National Theatre’s 2009 revival of Mother Courage and Her Children, directed by Deborah Warner, starred Fiona Shaw as Courage and also used Kushner’s translation of the original German text. The show was performed on a relatively bare stage, and featured live music by Duke Special and his band. Because of this, and the concert-venue stage space of the Oliver Theatre stage, this production took on a rock concert aesthetic and tone (Shaw entered at the top of the show wearing sunglasses). It was performed on a revolving stage, with visible technicians and crew members. In addition to banners onto which the setting captions were projected, this production also utilized recordings of the captions, read aloud by Gore Vidal. The sounds effects of the war were performed by one man at a mic-stand in the downstage corner of the stage.

Charles Spencer, theatre reviewer for The Telegraph was unenthused by this lively production. Calling Warner’s production a “rock-and-roll circus,” Spencer asserts that aside from the live music of Duke Special and his band, this play was gimmicky and meaningless. According to him, Warner, and Shaw in her performance, lost all meaning in the pursuit of hipness. With a jaunty and energetic tone, Brecht’s magnum opus was rid of elements of intellectualism or political discourse. Though Spencer acknowledges that this production nods to the contemporary wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, he says that it is just that: a nod, without substance or follow-through.

Michael Billington of The Guardian disagrees with Spencer’s analysis of Shaw’s performance. Though he too notes her occasionally inappropriate jauntiness, he remarks that she admirably and effectively captured the dichotomies that Courage represents and the opposing forces within her, “She is courageous and cowardly, philosophical and pragmatic” mother, businesswoman, and warrior. Billington also argues that the music is not as captivating as it should have been, and that there was a definitive un-Brechtian flavor to some of the moments, design elements, and general dramaturgy of this production. Overall, Billington praises this production for its update of Brecht’s old work, making it accessible to new audiences and breathing life and energy into its story.

Stamp commemorating the 1945 Berliner Ensemble production

The biggest challenge, and eventual failure, of these modern productions is their goal of making Brecht accessible, relevant, and interesting to modern audiences. It seems that they were trying too hard, and in trying to make Brecht’s style and brilliance available to today’s audiences, they lost the essence of Brecht’s work. Kushner’s translation, a link between these two shows, seems to miss the intellectual distance and dialectic writing style of Brecht’s original Mother Courage. For my production, I propose that we use a different, direct translation, one more true to Brecht’s writing. From these productions, we can learn the necessity of embracing Brecht’s verfremdungseffekt and his overt

Brecht and Weigel in rehearsal

political goals with no unnecessary spectacle or fancy new spin. Live music does appear to enhance the tone of the show, as long as the tone of the music is congruent with the desired (and true) tone of the production. While both of these productions, like the original productions, were produced in social climates of war, neither directly addresses the contemporary effects of the wars, which was a main goal of the original writing and production of Mother Courage. Without directly addressing and engaging with the war climate and modern conceptions and effects of war, these productions could not capture the desperate and tragic themes of war within the play. My production of Mother Courage and Her Children will overtly acknowledge the current wars in the Middle East, while perhaps connecting this wartime with wartimes of the past, just as the original production did in directly addressed WWII through the guise of the Thirty Years War.

Billington, Michael. “Mother Courage and Her Children.” Rev. of Mother Courage and Her Children. The Guardian 27 Sept. 2009: n. pag. The Guardian. Web. 31 May 2016. <https://www.theguardian.com/stage/2009/sep/27/mother-courage-and-her-children-review>.

Brantley, Ben. “Mother, Courage, Grief and Song.” Rev. of Mother Courage and Her Children. The New York Times 22 Aug. 2006: n. pag. The New York Times. Web. 31 May 2016. <http://www.nytimes.com/2006/08/22/theater/reviews/22moth.html>.

McCarter, Jeremy. “The Courage of Their Convictions.” Rev. of Mother Courage and Her Children. New York Magazine n.d.: n. pag. New York Magazine Theater. Web. 31 May 2016. <http://nymag.com/arts/theater/reviews/19669/>.

Spencer, Charles. “Mother Courage And Her Children at the National Theatre, Review.” Rev. of Mother Courage and Her Children. The Telegraph 28 Sept. 2009: n. pag. The Telegraph. Web. 31 May 2016. <http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/theatre/theatre-reviews/6239491/Mother-Courage-And-Her-Children-at-the-National-Theatre-review.html>.

Billington, Michael. “Mother Courage and Her Children.” Rev. of Mother Courage and Her Children. The Guardian 27 Sept. 2009: n. pag. The Guardian. Web. 31 May 2016. <https://www.theguardian.com/stage/2009/sep/27/mother-courage-and-her-children-review>.

“Delacorte Theater in Central Park.” General CentralParkcom. N.p., n.d. Web. 31 May 2016. <http://www.centralpark.com/guide/attractions/delacorte-theatre.html>.

McCarter, Jeremy. “The Courage of Their Convictions.” Rev. of Mother Courage and Her Children. New York Magazine n.d.: n. pag. New York Magazine Theater. Web. 31 May 2016. <http://nymag.com/arts/theater/reviews/19669/>.

“Mother Courage and Her Children.” Encyclopedia Britannica Online. Encyclopedia Britannica, n.d. Web. 31 May 2016. <http://www.britannica.com/topic/Mother-Courage-and-Her-Children>.

“Mother Courage and Her Children.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, n.d. Web. 31 May 2016. <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mother_Courage_and_Her_Children>.

“National Theatre’s Mother Courage Starring Fiona Shaw | Playbill.” Playbill. N.p., n.d. Web. 31 May 2016. <http://www.playbill.com/gallery/national-theatres-mother-courage-starring-fiona-shaw-com-2649?slide=0>.

“Playbill MOTHER COURAGE AND HER CHILDREN Signed: Lynn Redgrave, National Theatre.” EBay. N.p., n.d. Web. 31 May 2016. <http://www.ebay.com/itm/Playbill-MOTHER-COURAGE-AND-HER-CHILDREN-signed-Lynn-Redgrave-National-Theatre-/151776564243>.

Brecht, Bertolt, 19898-1956 Mother Courage and Her Children/playwright 1949 Berliner Ensemble


6. Other Topics and Approaches

The discussion of the past few sections has focused on the views and arguments of select figures within NE. The rationale for this focus has been twofold: first, because the positions and figures in question have been at the forefront of recent discussions of NE and second, because the general epistemological affinity between Kornblith and Goldman in particular (i.e., their common adherence to reliabilism) has allowed us to isolate and appreciate both the central challenges to NE and some of the major points of difference among its advocates. Once again, however, the selective focus above should not obscure the fact that many other naturalistic epistemological theories have been offered (Section 1.2). Thus, for example, in addition to reliabilist (Goldman, Kornblith), pragmatic (Stich), and information-theoretic (Dretske) views, teleo-functional thinking has been used in proffered accounts of both knowledge (Millikan 1984) and epistemic entitlement (Graham 2012). Pollock (1986, 1987), and Pollock and Cruz (1999), seek to understand epistemic justification in terms of conformity to procedural norms of belief-formation, the correctness of which is ensured by the contents of the relevant concepts. And others&mdash&ldquononfactualists&rdquo such as Field (1998), and &ldquoexpressivists&rdquo such as Chrisman (2007)&mdashregard the use of epistemic terms, and the explicit endorsement of specific epistemic norms and evaluations, as essentially a matter of expressing one&rsquos attitudes, pro and con. These and other specific views represent other ongoing attempts to understand various epistemic concepts and/or phenomena in a naturalistic manner. While each faces distinct challenges, qua naturalistic views, the most pressing issues facing them are those discussed above.

In addition to such positions with regard to specific epistemic matters, there are other regions of epistemology in which NE figures prominently. This final section briefly describes three further such areas&mdashsocial epistemology, feminist epistemology, and the debate over (epistemic) rationality.

6.1 Social epistemology

As we have seen, NE is motivated by a variety of concerns about the methods and ideals of TE&mdashfor instance, a reliance upon the a priori, an apsychological, &ldquocurrent time slice&rdquo (Goldman 2011) approach to understanding knowledge or justification, a tendency to overlook or idealize the resources and abilities that actual epistemic subjects possess, and so on. Another aspect of TE that has recently come under much scrutiny is its tendency to treat subjects in rather individualistic terms&mdashi.e., as divorced from their social environment. This too is seen as a serious distortion, given that people&rsquos lives, epistemic and otherwise, are importantly shaped by social forces. (Indeed, according to some, even this way of putting it is misleading, since it paints individuals as explanatorily prior to the social in epistemic matters.) Worth noting here is that even paradigm instances of NE might be charged with being unduly focused on the individual&mdashe.g., with looking to individual psychology as being especially relevant to epistemology, at the expense of areas of empirical study with a more social orientation (cf. Grandy 1994: 346&ndash348).

Social epistemology (SE) is a large and diverse area of research aimed at countering the individualism of TE by studying epistemic phenomena from a properly social perspective. (Sample overviews of SE are Schmitt 1994 and Goldman and Blanchard 2015. Goldman and Whitcomb 2011 is an up-to-date collection of papers on SE and Lackey 2014 is a volume of new papers on collective epistemology specifically.) Just as with NE, different specific theories and theorists within SE maintain closer or more distant relations to TE. Some social epistemologists maintain a view of the individual as the primary locus of epistemic achievement, for example, while others treat entities other than individuals, such as groups or corporations, as having epistemic properties. Some theorists evaluate various social processes and institutions in terms of some more general, non-social feature (e.g., reliability), while others think that the relevant good-making features are not so reducible. Some retain truth as the primary epistemic goal others propose some non-traditional goal. And so on. Across these various approaches, however, many practitioners within SE are motivated by concerns similar to those that animate NE, and many of the forms and themes within NE (Section 1.2) appear here as well. (In terms of the theoretical choice points mentioned just above, Goldman 1999b, for example&mdashas he does with respect to NE per se&mdashtends to occupy the more &ldquoconservative&rdquo positions the SE of Martin Kusch 2002, for instance, rejects many of the core assumptions of TE and Helen Longino&rsquos 2002 views are, arguably, intermediate between the two.)

6.2 Feminist epistemology

As the reference to Longino in the previous (sub)section suggests, there is a continuity between the issues and concerns addressed within SE and those addressed within feminist epistemology (FE). (For overviews of the latter, see Anderson 2012 Grasswick 2013, esp. Section 1 and Janack n.d. in Other Internet Resources). Like SE (and NE), of course, FE is a broad category, within which many diverse projects and positions are assayed. As Longino puts it,

There is no single feminist epistemology. Instead there are a plethora of ideas, approaches, and arguments that have in common only their authors&rsquo commitment to exposing and reversing the derogation of women and the gender bias of traditional formulations. (1999: 331)

Nonetheless, like SE and NE, historically FE has been motivated by concerns about the ideals and assumptions built into TE&mdashalbeit, of course, from a distinctly feminist perspective. Thus, for example, traditional notions of reason and objectivity have been subjected to critical scrutiny, on the grounds that they embody (usually tacitly) certain characteristically masculine ideals, such as a separation from other people, from the object of knowledge, and from one&rsquos own body and the socio-cultural milieu. (Not surprisingly, here, once again, Cartesian assumptions and aspirations come in for special critical attention.)

Against this general background, many theorists adopt a more or less naturalistic approach to the subject matter&mdashfocusing on particular features of the actual epistemic situation and drawing from a diverse range of areas of empirical study (psychology, gender studies, sociological and historical studies, and others). Among such NE-minded philosophers, however, different theorists once again stake out different positions. Thus, for example, a number of feminist epistemologists (e.g., Antony 1993, Campbell 1998, Nelson 1990) draw upon Quine&rsquos work. Just as in NE, however, others (e.g., Clough 2004, Code 1996) argue that a different sort of naturalistic approach is to be preferred&mdashsometimes, on grounds familiar from those discussed earlier sometimes, because of specifically feminist concerns. So too, just as in both NE and SE, there is disagreement about how much of the original framework of TE&mdashwhich of its concepts, concerns, and assumptions&mdashshould be retained, and how certain of its elements might need to be recast so as to render them acceptable.

6.3 Rationality debates

In addition to being of central interest within TE, rationality is central to our self-conception: Aristotle held that we are &ldquorational animals&rdquo, a presumption built into the very name of our species (&ldquohomo sapiens&rdquo) and the thought that humans are rational, perhaps distinctively so, appears to be part of the popular fabric of thought about ourselves. There is long-standing disagreement among epistemologists as to the nature of epistemic rationality (&ldquorationality&rdquo)&mdashwhich, on one understanding, is distinguished from other forms of rationality by being concerned with the effective pursuit of the distinctively cognitive-epistemic end of true belief. There has also recently arisen heated debate&mdashoften termed &ldquothe Rationality Wars&rdquo&mdashamong psychologists and philosophers of psychology concerning what we should say in the face of empirical findings about humans&rsquo apparently disappointing performance on certain &ldquoreasoning tasks&rdquo. According to some, those results force us to confront the possibility that humans may in fact be quite irrational. According to others, such results, together with a psychologically realistic view of how human reasoning actually proceeds, point up the need to revise standard views of what rationality involves. (Much of the resulting debate recapitulates, in broad terms, the debate within TE as to the nature of justified, or rational, belief. [28] )

For example, well-known experimental findings&mdashe.g., those of Tversky and Kahneman (1982) concerning probabilistic reasoning, and those of Wason (1968) concerning deductive reasoning&mdashcannot be taken to illustrate failures in rationality unless we assume what Stein (1996) calls &ldquothe Standard Picture&rdquo (SP):

According to this picture, to be rational is to reason in accordance with principles of reasoning that are based on rules of logic, probability theory and so forth. If the standard picture of reasoning [rationality] is right, principles of reasoning that are based on such rules are normative principles of reasoning, namely they are the principles we ought to reason in accordance with. (Stein 1996: 4)

According to some, rather than suggesting that humans are irrational, the relevant findings (among many other considerations) give us good occasion to ask whether it is reasonable to see &ldquothe Standard Picture&rdquo as providing the relevant normative standard. Discussion of the ensuing debate would take us too far afield here (but see note 27). For present purposes, it suffices to note that it shares many features with the debate within and about NE. Empirical results and considerations of psychological feasibility play a large role within the rationality debate, and many of the facts and factors appealed to by friends of NE in their critique of TE (see Sections 1.2 and 3.2 above, e.g.) reappear here either as criticisms of SP, or as proffered constraints upon an adequate conception of rationality. Finally, as with debates within and about NE generally, discussions of rationality involve appeals to both normative and psychological considerations, with many of the most contested issues having to do with how best to balance their sometimes-competing claims.