Brothers for a year: How African-American GIs became men through combat friendships and Black Power during the Vietnam War [electronic resource].
- Families -- Research
Sociology -- Research
United States -- History
Blacks -- History
- Local subjects:
Penn dissertations -- History.
History -- Penn dissertations.
- System Details:
- Mode of access: World Wide Web.
- This dissertation examines the ways that black GIs defined their manhood through the rhetoric of the Black Power Movement, their participation in protest groups, and their experiences in combat with white and Latino men. The promise of equal treatment in the armed forces seemed genuine to black soldiers in the mid-sixties. Like their civilian peers in the Civil Rights Movement, black servicemen grew impatient with the pace of change and felt "feminized" by their subordinate status in the armed forces. African-American GIs, in other words, were frustrated by their lack of power. These young men found themselves fighting in large numbers on the front lines of an unpopular war. Many white superiors refused to grant well deserved promotions to black soldiers, but were quick to punish them for minor infractions of military regulations. In addition to their problems with the military hierarchy, black soldiers often felt alienated from their white peers. Black Power addressed these feelings of powerlessness and alienation. Searching for social and personal power, young African-American GIs engendered themselves as black men through their communitarian ties and their defiance of military authority. Yet the need for teamwork in combat and the seductive appeal of military notions of manliness meant that most black men found common ground with their white compatriots and never abandoned interracial male friendships altogether. This study elucidates the strategies that African-American men have devised to deal with their marginal status in American society.
- Thesis (Ph.D. in History) -- University of Pennsylvania, 1999.
Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 60-07, Section: A, page: 2632.
Adviser: Mary Frances Berry.
- Local notes:
- School code: 0175.
- Berry, Mary Frances, advisor
University of Pennsylvania.
- Contained In:
- Dissertation Abstracts International 60-07A.
- Access Restriction:
- Restricted for use by site license.
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