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Exchange Exemplar: Martha Graham and dance as weapons in the Cold War

The long and chilly standoff between the United States and the Soviet Union included many people with particular sets of skills: pilots and spies and defectors and dancers.

That last one is not a typo, because the US did enlist dancers and other cultural ambassadors in demonstrating our cultural superiority to the Soviets. The famed dancer Martha Graham was among them, even though she insisted she was not involved in politics.

The story is told in Victoria Phillips's book Martha Graham's Cold War. We revisit our 2020 interview with the author in this hour.

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The Jefferson Exchange is Jefferson Public Radio's daily news program focused on issues, people and events across Southern Oregon and Northern California. Angela Decker is the program's senior producer, Charlie Zimmermann is the assistant producer, and Geoffrey Riley hosts the show.