Prisoners of War, National Defeat, and the Crisis of Male Authority
This chapter examines the Nixon administration's 1968–1973 publicity campaign to call the public's attention to the plight of American prisoners of war (POWs) and their families and how it combined the themes of military defeat abroad and male absenteeism within the home by featuring ubiquitous images of families without fathers. It shows how these images, originally intended to sanctify the national cause with regard to the Vietnam War, took on new meanings as POW wives—influenced by the rise of feminism—became more independent in their husbands' absences and did not want to relinquish it upon repatriation. The chapter also discusses the theme of male absenteeism in relation to those missing in action, and how it translated into a critique of a supposedly weak and corrupt federal government that had “left men behind”.
North Carolina Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.
If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.