By Patricia Keeton
No different cinematic style extra sharply illustrates the contradictions of yank society - notions approximately social type, politics, and socio-economic ideology - than the struggle movie. This booklet examines the most recent cycle of warfare movies to bare how they mediate and negotiate the complexities of struggle, type, and a military-political project mostly long past undesirable.
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Extra resources for American War Cinema and Media since Vietnam: Politics, Ideology, and Class
Class and War in Two Early Twentieth-Century Novels Two novels, one American and one French, radically portray the divide between workers and the society that used them as cannon fodder, sending them into wars not of their choosing. Both authors, avowed socialists, acknowledge that only one’s social class brothers matter in war, and anyone, like the officers and politicians who send them into combat, are the real enemy. With nearly a century of hindsight, these works were conspicuous for their not having been made into movies, though it is easy to see why.
Achilles’s very identity is tied to war, for the honor and glory he has been promised would be his by the goddess Thetis, his mother, as long as he stayed in Troy; therefore when Achilles echoes Thersites’s sentiments, it comes as a bit of a shock. In book nine (“The Embassy to Achilles”), in an attempt to reenergize the war effort, Agamemnon sends his most trusted emissary, Odysseus, to Achilles’s tent, hoping to win his greatest warrior back into battle. With remarkable candor and bitter irony, Achilles replies: What lasting thanks in the long run for warring with our enemies, on and on, no end?
Or still more gold you’re wanting . . How shameful for you, the high and mighty commander, to lead the sons of Achaea into bloody slaughter! Home we go in our ships! Abandon him here in Troy to wallow in all his prizes—he’ll see if the likes of us have propped him up or not (Homer 1990: lines 262–275). Thersites urges the men to take the marshal of armies at his word and abandon the cause in Troy. In any event, it is not the cause of the ordinary soldiers, though it may be that of the chieftains.
American War Cinema and Media since Vietnam: Politics, Ideology, and Class by Patricia Keeton