Date of Award

8-7-2018

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Political Science

First Advisor

Dr. Henry Carey

Second Advisor

Dr. Jelena Subotic

Third Advisor

Dr. Mario Feit

Abstract

Janet Cramer’s concept of militarized patriotism is an important contribution to the study of social militarization. This essay attempts to expand our understanding of militarized patriotism by interrogating the ways patriotic norms of behavior are established within American culture and altered during moments of crisis. I argue that changes in the cinematic reproduction of the image of the soldier during the 1970s established “honoring the soldier” as a new form of enforced patriotic behavior. In particular, I argue that the attempt to portray the “real” events of Vietnam constructed an image of the wounded soldier that allowed audiences to empathize with American veterans. As the image of the wounded soldier was consolidated in American culture during the 1980s and 1990s, honoring the soldier became a repressive mechanism that now works to legitimize a permanent state of war.

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