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This book is about understanding how former combatants come home after war, and how their political lives are refracted by the war and the experience of coming home itself. In particular, it captures the political mobilization among former combatants as they come home from three very different types of war: civil war (Colombia), war of independence (Namibia), and interstate war (United States involvement in the Vietnam War). The book provides a much-needed long-term perspective on peace. It also demonstrates the artificial division between literatures across the Global North and Global South, and demonstrates how these literatures speak to each other just as the three cases speak to each other. The novel use of interviews to document life histories and the inside perspective they provide also give a unique insight into the former combatants’ own perspectives on the process of coming home and their sense of political voice. This book is not about peacebuilding in the sense of interventions. Rather, it examines peace as a process through studying the lived experiences of individuals, displaying the dynamics of political mobilization after disarmament across time in the lives of fifty former combatants. The book demonstrates how the process of coming home shapes their political commitment and identity, and how the legacy of war is a powerful reminder in the lives of these former combatants long after the end of the war.

Textual representations
Editor: Angela K. Smith

The changes in warfare during the twentieth century could be addressed from a variety of perspectives, political, cultural, and national. This book addresses the issue of how gender is constructed by exploring a range of historical events. It also asserts that a focus on gender, rather than producing a depoliticised reading of our culture, offers an informed debate on a range of political issues. The book explores the impact of warfare on women whose civilian or quasi-military roles resulted in their exile or self-exile to the role of 'other'. The book first draws upon a number of genres to use Richard Aldington and H. D. (the poet Hilda Doolittle), to understand the social and cultural implications of warfare for both parties in a relationship. Then, it examines the intricate gender assumptions that surround the condition of 'shell shock' through a detailed exploration of the life and work of Ver a Brittain. Continuing this theme, considering the nature of warfare, the gendered experience of warfare, through the lens of the home front, the book discusses the gendered attitudes to the First World War located within Aldous Huxley's novella 'Farcical History of Richard Greenow'. Wars represented in Western cinema are almost universally gendered as male, which corresponds to the battlefield history of twentieth-century warfare. As this situation changes, and more women join the armed services, especially in the United States, a more inclusive cinematic coding evolves through struggle. The book considers three decades of film, from the Vietnam War to the present.

Ann Sherif

grass-roots groups that converged in Hiroshima during the 1960s articulated an emerging global norm: a fresh articulation of the notion of human rights.3 This chapter uses a case study to explore significant new articulations of the discourse of human rights during the Cold War that emerged as America’s legitimacy shifted v 165 v Ann Sherif during the Vietnam War and transnational dialogues among social movements became tremendously influential. Specifically, in 1966, five Hiroshima anti-nuclear activists and two Americans involved in the anti-Vietnam War and civil

in Understanding the imaginary war
From Vietnam to the war in the Persian Gulf
John Storey

Vietnam War as a noble cause betrayed – an American tragedy’. For example, in the 1980 presidential campaign Ronald Reagan declared, in an attempt to put an end to the Vietnam Syndrome, ‘It is time we recognized that ours was, in truth, a noble cause.’ 9 Moreover, Reagan insisted, ‘Let us tell those who fought in that war that we will never again ask young men to fight and possibly die in a war our

in Memory and popular film
Abstract only
Duy Lap Nguyen

capitalism in the South Vietnamese context, from the v4v Introduction colonial era to the end of the Vietnam War. As a conceptual frame for the project, the first part of the book reconstructs the ideology that informed the seemingly improbable account of the conflict that Nhu relayed to Maneli during their meeting in 1963. From the point of view of Nhu’s Vietnamese Personalism, the war was not a contest between Marxism and nationalism, or communism and democracy (as it appears from a Cold War perspective), but an anti-capitalist struggle against Stalinism and US

in The unimagined community
Michael Goodrum and Philip Smith

mover in much of this was the war in Vietnam. In the spring of 1965, the US escalated its military intervention in the civil war. This was not the first war experienced by the generation who came of age after the Second World War; between 1945 and 1965, the US dispatched troops to Korea, Lebanon, and Santo Domingo. The threat of war with the Soviet Union, too, had loomed since the end of the Second World War. War, then, was never too distant from public consciousness, but the Vietnam War was nonetheless an unprecedented development in American military history in both

in Printing terror
Abstract only
Heroism, masculinity and violence in Vietnam War narratives
Angela K. Smith

battle, successful action carried out against an enemy, has been an integral part of the way masculinity has been constructed for generations. A simple paradigm, perhaps, but complicated when viewed from the early twenty-first century. Discussing this, the helicopter pilots in Robert Mason’s Vietnam War memoir Chickenhawk ( 1984 ) articulate an interesting paradox. 2 They call themselves ‘chickenhawks’. The metaphor, a hybrid of

in Gender and warfare in the twentieth century
Rhiannon Vickers

recalcitrant colleagues. Vic2-03_Vic01 10/03/2011 11:20 Page 64 64 THE LABOUR PARTY AND THE WORLD, VOLUME 2 Britain and the Vietnam War Michael Stewart, Harold Wilson’s Foreign Secretary for nearly four years in the 1960s, said that Vietnam ‘was to prove the most difficult and the most agonizing of all the problems I had to face’.20 While the party leadership saw Vietnam within the context of the Cold War contest against the spread of Communism, the party membership saw Vietnam largely as a war of national liberation. Vietnam galvanised leftwing opposition to Wilson

in The Labour Party and the world
Abstract only
Michael Lumbers

feelers to the mainland.8 This work affirms that the Johnson presidency did not represent a period of stagnation, and that senior officials contemplated significant departures from long-standing China policy more than was recognized at the time. Parting from available accounts, however, it directly links evolutions in perception and policy to events which scholars have hitherto taken to be a cause of deadlock between Washington and Beijing: the Vietnam War and China’s Cultural Revolution. The specter of renewed Sino-American hostilities moved the Johnson team to extend

in Piercing the bamboo curtain
Sovereignty, surveillance and spectacle in the Vietnam War
Duy Lap Nguyen

The unimagined community v 7 v Image-making and US imperialism: Sovereignty, surveillance and spectacle in the Vietnam War The war in Vietnam is often described as a conflict defined by popular culture and modern mass media, as the first “television war” and the first “Rock ’n’ Roll war.” These phenomena, mass culture and media, which distinguished the war from earlier conflicts, were the products of what the national security advisor, Walt Whitman Rostow, referred to as a “society of high mass consumption.”1 The war, then, was a conflict waged by the world

in The unimagined community