War never ends when the shooting stops. On the contrary, struggles in the realm of representation tend to intensify once combat, that great amplifier of noise and dampener of debate, has come to an end. When the dust clears, strenuous battles over interpretation begin in earnest. Justifications for going to war are held up to scrutiny and sometimes found wanting. Journalists wring their hands, recriminating against those who lied to them and swearing never again to be so credulous, while cultural producers — film-makers, artists, writers, curators — shape the raw material of war into a source of inspiration or warning. Wars freshly ended or long since past provide opportunities to celebrate heroism, mourn shared losses, affirm a sense of community forged through sacrifice or to kindle the enduring enmities around which collective identity frequently coalesces.
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- Conclusion: After War, More War
Susan L. Carruthers
- Macmillan Education UK
- Sequence number