Graduation Semester and Year

Spring 2024



Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in History



First Advisor

James Sandy

Second Advisor

Stephanie Cole

Third Advisor

Christopher Morris


This project seeks to understand how American popular culture and Hollywood films represented American soldiers and veterans in the immediate aftermath of the U.S. war in Vietnam. America welcomed home its veterans in prior wars like WWII, but the U.S.'s war in Vietnam was different. Many Vietnam veterans were emotionally damaged and shunned from society because of the unpopularity of the war itself. Whether right or wrong, popular culture exposed this indifference. Popular culture is its own reality, but it portrayed Vietnam soldiers and veterans as losing their innocence, experiencing psychotic breaks, and becoming wounded due to their exposure to combat. Men were essentially unable to live up to pre-conceived notions of masculinity. These notions were promised to them by previous generations or shown to them in morally upstanding popular culture images of what an American soldier was supposed to represent.


Hollywood's Vietnam


Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.