Abe and Julia: Honor and Survival During Hoover’s Reign

A celebration of the lives of Abe and Julia Kotelchuck
An evening with David Kotelchuck, author of a new book on his parents just published by Blue Thread, an imprint of Jewish Currents

Abe and Julia Kotelchuck were pursued as Communist Party activists by J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI with a relentless vindictiveness that reached deep into their work and family lives for well over two decades. This thoroughly researched memoir by their adult son, Dr. David Kotelchuck, uses 2,200 pages of Abe’s and Julia’s FBI files, interviews with family members, news articles (particularly by the great independent journalist, I.F. Stone), books by historians of the McCarthy Era, and personal memory to create a portrait of resistance to government repression that is at once chilling and heartwarming.

Kotelchuck reveals his parents as “persons of great moral courage” who “refused to change their views in the face of governmental persecution.” He also reveals Hoover’s FBI as using dirty tricks, forgeries, illegal wiretaps, and intimidation while “hounding . . . domestic opponents of U.S. policies during the Cold War period, often illegally, without prior evidence of or subsequent findings of wrong-doing,” a pattern that “deserves public attention as our country continues to this day to struggle with individual citizens’ rights to dissent from and organize against governmental policies on the one hand, and the nation’s right to investigate and protect itself from potential domestic and foreign threats on the other.”

You can order the book from Jewish Currents as follows: http://jewishcurrents.bigcartel.com/product/abe-and-julia-honor-and-survival-during-hoover-s-reign-by-david-kotelchuck

Dr. David Kotelchuck is Professor Emeritus of Occupational and Environmental Health at the Hunter College School of Health Sciences, City University of New York. His Ph.D. is in high-energy physics from Cornell University, and he holds an MPH in Occupational Health from Harvard School of Public Health. Dr. Kotelchuck has worked as director of health and safety for the United Electrical Workers union and was a founder of the Center for Occupational and Environmental Health at Hunter. He has a long record of civil rights, labor, environmental, and public health activism, and has worked closely with several unions on worker safety issues. He and his wife Ronda, who has had a distinguished career in preventive and primary-care medical delivery, have two children and six grandchildren.

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