The Myth of the Good War: Elizabeth Samet on American Nostalgia

World War II is nostalgically remembered throughout American culture as the “good war”––a conflict where Americans idealistically banded together to free the world from tyranny. Of course, there is more to this story, but is this simplified popular understanding dangerous?

In this week’s episode of None Of The Above, the Institute for Global Affairs’ Mark Hannah talks with West Point English professor Elizabeth Samet about the importance of literature for preparing America’s future officer corps for life in and out of uniform, and about Americans’ collective memory of the Second World War. Elizabeth shows how our romanticized reading of history has led US policymakers to overstate the effectiveness and righteousness of military force.  

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This podcast episode includes references to the Eurasia Group Foundation, now known as the Institute for Global Affairs.

This post is part of None Of The Above, a podcast of IGA hosted by senior fellow Mark Hannah.

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