The Meta-Narrative of American History

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The Meta-Narrative of American History “One man’s dream is another man’s nightmare”, and perhaps one nation’s war is a potential Hollywood movie. While many Hollywood filmmakers have deemed it their true calling to present the war topic to the public in creating pictures which, according to McCrisken and Pepper, allow them to “critically engage with complicated questions about what constitutes ‘America’ domestically and internationally in the post-Cold War world.” A subject which leaves room for little to no debate is the perception that Hollywood directors, along with their pedagogical and informative topics, usually resort to films in order to convey messages and inform their viewers of the “bigger picture” they might seem to have glanced so quickly at. Such is the case with the two high-profile war movies, which are the subject of debate in this thesis, Oliver Stone’s Platoon (1986) and David Russell’s Three Kings (1999). Upon their release, with the emphasis on the former, they have both created quite a buzz which attracted the attention of many historians and created controversy which would be put under the microscope and thus promoting historical inquiry which the Americans would soon want to unravel (McCrisken & Pepper, 2005). In order to better understand the topic at hand, it is of extreme importance to tackle the perceived motive behind the advancements of the American army in the Vietnam War, and their involvement in the Gulf War. (thesis statement here?) Oliver Stone’s ‘Platoon’: 1986 On the one hand, although Stone shies away and gives very little information regarding the motives behind the war, it is believed that the primary origin of the Vietnam War was a result of the consequences of the Cold War – many believing... ... middle of paper ... .... Address to the 46th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York City. Retrieved April 7, 2014, from Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States of America: http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/?pid=20012 McCrisken, T. B., & Pepper, A. (2005). American History and Contemporary Hollywood Film. New Brunswick, New Jersey: Rutgers University Press. Rosenstone, R. A. (2000). Oliver Stone as Historian. In R. B. Toplin, Oliver Stone's USA: Film, History and Controversy (pp. 27-28). Kansas: University of Kansas Press. Vidal, G. (2002). Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace: How We Got to Be So Hated. New York: Nation Books. Rollins, P. C., & O'Connor, J. E. (2008). Why We Fought: America's Wars in Film and History. Lexington, Kentucky: The University Press of Kentucky. Bush, G. H. W., & Scowcroft, B. (1998). A world transformed. New York: Alfred A. Knopf.
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