Georgetown Professor Carroll Quigley, doing some
writing on his West Virginia farm, picked up the ringing
and answered it. The
man on the other end of the line said he was from Dallas
and wanted to ask the Georgetown historian "a few
did. For 40 minutes. When Dr. Quigley begged
to be allowed to get back to his books, the caller said:
"Just one more question, Professor. Why is Governor Nelson Rockefeller a Communist?"
Quigley has been plagued by hundreds of letters and
telephone calls from the American political spectrum's
far right since he wrote his
well-known Tragedy and Hope: A History of the World
in Our Time in 1966.
John Birch Society, the Liberty Lobby, the Phyllis Schafly Report and the telephone outlet known as "Let
Freedom Ring" are among the groups
which have been titillated by the book but strangely
have denounced the author.
far right-wingers claim that Dr. Quigley's 1,348-page
book, which sold some 8,000 copies and is now
indefinitely out of stock, reveals the
existence of a conspiracy by international capitalists
on Wall Street and in London to take over the world and turn it over
to the Communists. What's more, Dr. Quigley is an
"insider" in the scheme, they charge.
Georgetown historian says that's nonsense, that he never
wrote as much, and that he is not, as the right-wingers
charge, a member of this
group of super rich and elite "pro-Communist insiders."
right-wing author, in particular, has been giving Dr.
Quigley a hard time. He is W. Cleon Skousen, a
teacher of religion at Brigham Young
University in Provo, Utah, whose background, Dr, Quigley
said, includes 16 years with the
FBI, four years as Salt
Lake City's police chief and 10 years as editorial
director of the magazine LAW AND ORDER.
Professor Skousen, who wrote The Naked Communist
in 1961, has followed it up with The Naked
Review and Commentary on
Dr. Carroll Quigley's Book, Tragedy and Hope, a
121-page treatise which has 30 pages
of direct quotations from
Dr. Quigley's book.
Meanwhile, the Utah professor has sold more than 55,000
copies of his book, and the Washington office of Liberty
Lobby estimates it sells 25
copies a day now at $2 each. What's more, Dr.
Quigley is less than happy with Professor Skousen's "lifting" 30
pages of his quotations without permission and, Dr.
Quigley thinks, in violation of copyright laws.
book is full of misrepresentations and factual errors,"
Professor Quigley said. "He claims that I have
written of a conspiracy of
the super-rich who are pro-Communist and wish to take
over the world and that I'm a member of this group. But I
never called it a conspiracy and don't regard it as
such. "I'm not an 'insider' of these rich
persons," Dr. Quigley continued,
"although Skousen thinks so. I happen to know some
of them and liked them, although I disagreed with some of the
things they did before 1940."
Skousen also claims, Dr. Quigley believes, the
influential group of Wall Street financiers still exists
and controls the country. "I never
said that," Dr. Quigley said flatly. "In fact, they
never were in a position to 'control' it, merely to
influence political events."
influential Wall Street group of which he wrote about 25
pages in Tragedy and Hope ceased to exist about 1940,
Dr. Quigley claims. He also faults Skousen for saying that
Hope's intention was, in Dr. Quigley's words, "to reveal anything, least
of all a purely hypothetical controversy. My only
desire was to present a balanced picture of the 70 years from 1895-1965. The book is based on more than 25 years of research."
Meanwhile, Tragedy and Hope is becoming a rare
commodity following the publicity from right-wing
groups. Copies often aren't returned to
libraries around the country, although some
right-wingers claim that left-wing librarians are removing it to "suppress"
Dr Quigley's "revelations."
rightists are claiming that Macmillan, Tragedy and
Hope’s publishers, won’t reprint it because
Macmillan allegedly has had second
thoughts and now wants to hush up Dr. Quigley’s
Second-hand copies are being sold in bookstores now at
$20 and up, with waiting lists of 12 to 20 persons
seeking copies. Classified
advertisements seeking the book are not uncommon in
Quigley says Tragedy and Hope, priced at $12.95
five years ago, never could be sold for that price today
because “it was underpriced then. It cost less than a penny a page, when most hard-backed
books now sell for at least two cents a page. I doubt
if a reprinted version could be priced at $20 or more.”
Georgetown historian, who has been taking the whole
thing in a combination of stride and amusement, is
nevertheless irked because
the controversy takes up so much of his time.
School of Foreign Service alumni regularly write,
wanting to know more. (Dr. Quigley’s “Development
of Civilization” course was named their
favorite in a recent survey of SFS alumni of 1955-69.)
People from all over the U.S. send in clippings about him from