John Bodnar: The Good War in American Memory



Interesting look at the way views of the Second World War has changed over time Some very interesting points and arguments Bodnar s Remaking America was excellent clearly defining the competing versions of memory official and vernacular I eagerly approached his treatment of WWII anticipating the application of this line of analysis Disappointingly that clarity is not evident in this book He. The Good War in American Memory dispels the long held myth that Americans forged an agreement on why they had to fight in World War II John Bodnar's sociocultural examination of the vast public debate that took place in the United States over the war's meaning reveals that the idea of the good war was highly contestedBodnar's comprehensive study.

Provides a fine review the many influences on memory of the past including the historical record nderstanding that memory is not history and vice versa to memoir the novel film the sense of WWII held by participants and their families and loved ones and community roles remembrances and commemorations He rues the loss of FDR s Four Freedoms from much of the mass of materials treating with th. Of the disagreements that marked the American remembrance of World War II in the six decades following its end draws on an array of sources fiction and nonfiction movies theater and public monuments He identifies alternative strands of memory tragic and brutal versus heroic and virtuous and reconstructs controversies involving veterans minorities.

Summary The Good War in American Memory

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E war But did this declaration constitute the official memory we are to hold To privilege the idealistic rhetoric over the costly in blood and treasure reality of our response to the Japanese attack and the German declaration of war Summer Love upon the United States seems a distortion of memoryNonetheless the book does reminds that values are an important constituent in the formulation of public memor. And memorials In building this narrative Bodnar shows how the idealism of President Franklin Roosevelt's Four Freedoms was lost in the public commemoration of World War II how the war's memory became intertwined in the larger discussion over American national identity and how it only came to be known as the good war many years after its conclusi.