Arguing the World

PBS Arguing the World Resource Website


For Purchase

DVD: Arguing the World. Available March 22, 2005.

VHS: Arguing the World. Available Now.

Book: Arguing the World by Joseph Dorman.


Allen Boyer's Review of the book Arguing the World: The New York Intellectuals
in Their Own Words.
Published in the NYT Oct. 1, 2000.

Stephen Holden's Review of the film. Published in the NYT January 7, 1998.

American Spectator Review by James Bowman. February 13, 1998.

Michael Gill's Review in Humanities, Jan/Feb 1998.

Joseph Dorman Writings about the New York Intellectuals

Book Review of Kevin Mattson's Intellectuals in Action: The Origins of the New Left and Radical Liberalism, 1945-1970. Published in the Forward October 11, 2002.

Book Review of Norman Podhoretz's My Love Affair with America. Published in the NYT July 16, 2000.

Book Review of Gerald Sorin's IRVING HOWE: A Life of Passonate Dissent. Published in the NYT March 2, 2003.

Arguing the World in the News

The Forward's There and Back Again
Tracing the Changing Contours of American Jewish Communities As They Moved From City Streets to Leaf

From cafeterias to cocktail parties to the pages of important magazines and journals, few groups of friends have argued ideas so passionately and so publicly as the writers and critics known as the New York Intellectuals. ARGUING THE WORLD is the portrait of four members of this group: Irving Kristol, Irving Howe, Daniel Bell, and Nathan Glazer. It is the story of a lifelong political argument among brilliant and engaging individuals who came of age as radicals at the City College of New York during the Great Depression and then journeyed across the political spectrum.

Tracing their rise to prominence as political and cultural critics in post-war America through magazines and journals like Partisan Review and Commentary the film charts their path through the controversies of the Cold War and Joe McCarthy's reign of terror, their clash with the tidal forces of the New Left on college campuses in the 60s, and the fights which pulled them apart in the midst of the conservative backlash hailed by Ronald Reagan's presidency in the eighties.

Leaving personal reminiscence, location photography, archival footage, images of New York and the voices of friends and critics, ARGUING THE WORLD explores the passions, the issues and the era that shaped these men