Seymour Melman

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Seymour Melman

Seymour Melman was part of a circle of critical intellectuals with epicenters in various networks. Three were central. First, Melman was part of the Frame of Reference group led by University of Pennsylvania Professor Zellig Harris. Second, he was part of a group of critical scholars at Columbia University including Robert S. Lynd, a leading sociologist in the United States. Third, he was connected to a wide network of national and international scholars and activists concerned with disarmament, economic conversion and economic democracy, e.g. Noam Chomsky, Marcus Raskin, Harley Shaiken, John Ullmann, Lloyd J. Dumas, John Kenneth Galbraith, among many others.

The legacy of Seymour Melman's work continues in a fellowship and research program supported by the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, D.C. and through the work of his former colleagues in the Economic Reconstruction Network[1].


In 1978 Seymour Melman and Andrew Young were Co-Chairmen of SANE-"A Citizens' Organization for a Sane World".[2]

Melman served as co-chairman of SANE and the American Committee on East-West Accord. He provided a strident attack on the concept of U.S. defense at a March 28, 1982 citizen conference sponsored by Rep. Ted Weiss.[3]

As at March, 1982, the following served on the Board of Directors of SANE:[4]

American Committee on East-West Accord

As at March 10, 1982, Seyrnour Melman, co-chairman was a member of the American Committee on East-West Accord. The ACEWA, based in Washington, D.C., was a tax-exempt "independent educational organization", with the stated aim of "improving East/West relations, with special focus on U.S.-Soviet relations." Seymour Melman also endorsed the Kennedy-Hatfield Nuclear Freeze Resolution which was introduced in the Senate on March 10, 1982.[5]

Opposing loans to Chile

In 1987, Joanne Landy, Thomas Harrison and Gail Daneker, Directors, Campaign for Peace and Democracy/East and West, New York, circulated a statement Against Loans to Chile calling upon the Reagan Administration to oppose all loans to Chile.

It has been signed by leading "peace, labor, human rights, religious and cultural figures from the United States, Western Europe and Latin America." They were "joined by a large number of activists and writers from the USSR and Eastern Europe, many of whom have been persecuted in their own countries for work in independent peace and human rights movements."

Seymour Melman endorsed the call.

The majority of signatories were affiliated with Democratic Socialists of America.[6]


  2. SANE letterhead May, 1978
  3. The War Called Peace: Glossary, published 1982
  4. warcalledpeace
  5. East-West Outlook newsletter, March-April 1982, Vol. 5, No. 2
  6. New York review of books, Vol 34, Number 10, June 11, 1987