National Affairs: Art for Polities' Sake

Paul Robeson is a great baritone, a good actor (Othello). He is also a Communist-liner. "There is no such thing as a nonpolitical artist," he explained at a rally of Communist war veterans in Washington. "Either the artist serves the people or he serves those who would throttle them."

Albany's Mayor Erastus Corning, II, in effect, agreed. On that basis Corning had ruled that Robeson could not sing in Philip Livingston Junior High School. A public school, said the mayor, should not be open to an artist identified with Communism. But the New York State Supreme Court reversed Corning and, in effect,...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!