Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program




Major Professor

Gunter Bischof

Second Advisor

James Mokhiber

Third Advisor

Henry Griffin


During the early 1960s when the American Civil Rights movement was beginning to gain momentum, another movement across the world was taking place to solidify the newly formed country of Israel as a sovereign state. To commemorate the foundation of Israel, American director Otto Preminger created the film Exodus, adapted from a book of the same name by Leon Uris. George Lincoln Rockwell, leader of the American Nazi Party, decided to take action by traveling throughout the country with his closest members to protest the film. Rockwell and his group of Nazis were outraged by the pro-Zionist depictions and the use of previously blacklisted screenwriters of Hollywood that were accused of being communist. This thesis will discuss the struggles of interpreting the First Amendment to the US Constitution, the conflict among American Jews on how to handle the rise of Nazism in America, and how the counter-protests gave a sense of validation to Holocaust survivors who faced their deepest fears. This thesis will also cover recent affairs and their relationship with the events that occurred in the early 1960s.


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