All articles

Fri
24
Nov
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Researching Pop Culture and Militarism: What exactly is an 'anti-war' film?

Selene Rivas - November 24, 2017

“A true war story is never moral. It does not instruct, nor encourage virtue, nor suggest models of proper human behavior, nor restrain men from doing the things men have always done. If a story seems moral, do not believe it. If at the end of a war story you feel uplifted, or if you feel that some small bit of rectitude has been salvaged from the larger waste, then you have been made the victim of a very old and terrible lie. There is no rectitude whatsoever. There is no virtue. As a first rule of thumb, therefore, you can tell a true war story by its absolute and uncompromising allegiance to obscenity and evil… You can tell a true war story if it embarrassses you. If you don’t care for obscenity, you don’t care for the truth; if you don’t care for the truth, watch how you vote. Send guys to war, they come home talking dirty.” - Tim O’Brien (The Thing They Carried)

 

Thu
23
Nov

Introducing the (Italian) Civil Peace Corps

Italian Civil Peace Corps

During the International Week of Action Against the Militarisation of Youth, we are celebrating and promoting the peacework of activists from across the world, and the Italian Civil Peace Corps is one them. They support local communities in Amman and Beirut, promote dialogue among young people, and help refugee kids overcoming the trauma of the war. Meet the team of the Italian Civil Peace Corps here, and read their statement below to find more information about their work:

We are the Civil Peace Corps. We represent the civil defence, a nonviolent -not an armed- one. We support local communities in Amman and Beirut to promote dialogue and tolerance.

Thu
23
Nov
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Researching Pop Culture and Militarism: Can Pop Culture Normalize Militarism/Militarization?

Militarism: Can Pop Culture Normalize Militarism/Militarization?

Selene Rivas - November 23, 2017

Can seemingly innocuous activities such as playing video games, watching movies, or binging on TV shows affect your ways to see the world or how you behave? Could it affect social norms? Is one able to “turn one’s brain off”, and not be affected beyond the most superficial level, by what one is consuming? Much has been written about violence in the media and how it might affect people’s behavior, and indeed, positive correlations with violence can be found1. But beyond these oft-discussed subject, the question is: what role does mass media and pop culture play in normalization? And, more related to this series of articles, what is the relationship between pop culture, militarism/militarization, and normalization? This article will attempt to approximate us to an answer..

Thu
23
Nov

Join the action! PPU calls for actions during the International Week of Action Against the Militarisation of Youth

Peace Pledge Union from the UK calls for actions during the International Week of Action Against the Militarisation of Youth.

Join the action! PPU calls for actions during the International Week of Action Against the Militarisation of Youth
Wed
22
Nov

Youth militarisation in Finland

Tuuli Vuori from Aseistakieltäytyjäliitto AKL (the Union of Conscientious Objectors, Finland) tells us about their counter-recruitment work in #Finland and calls everyone to join the action during the International Week of Action Against the Militarisation of Youth. 

Youth militarisation in Finland
Wed
22
Nov
gdghirardi's picture

Researching Pop Culture and Militarism: What is Militarism? What is Militarization?

Researching Pop Culture and Militarism: What is Militarism? What is Militarization?

Selene Rivas - November 22, 2017

In the previous articles, we talked about how normal is defined differently in both space and time; just as Japan and Argentina might have two different ideas of what constitutes as “normal”, so does 18th century and 21st century United States. We also talked about normalization, or how things become more (or less) socially accepted over time. Finally, we introduced the concept of “militarism”. In this article, we’ll attempt to define it as concisely as possible, as well as give examples of militarism in Japan.

The following statement is found in page 92 of the 1996 edition of Naval Science 1, a textbook used for High School JROTC courses.

Tue
21
Nov

Researching Pop Culture and Militarism: How do things become normal?

Researching Pop Culture and Militarism: How do things become normal?

Last article, we tried to answer the question of “what is normal?” and after a few examples, eventually settled on “normal is what a group of people are used to.” In this article, we’ll look at an example of the ‘normalization’ process, that is, getting used to something to the point where alternatives are forgotten. We’ll conclude by introducing the main topic of this series: how the presence of the United States military in a surprising amount of aspects of American culture has become so normal that it is no longer noticed or questioned.

“Normal” changes, not just from society to society, but also through time. In a single society, what was considered normal before is not necessarily thought of as normal now, and we can't even begin to imagine what things are normal today that won't be normal in the future. How does that happen? And does something becoming "normal" with time necessarily mean that it is "better"?

Mon
20
Nov

This week is the International Week of Action Against the Militarisation of Youth

This week (20-26 November) is the International Week of Action Against the Militarisation of Youth. During the week activists from various countries will be taking actions and organising events to raise awareness of how the military and military values are promoted to young people, and how we can challenge it.

In Czech Republic, NESEHNUTÍ is organising a screening of the movie “Výchova k válce” (Education for War), followed by a panel session on the militarisation of education in the country.

In Israel, activists from the Mesarvot network - a solidarity network supporting political conscientious objectors in Israel - is organising a demonstration in Tel Aviv in support of the young refuser, Matan Hellman, who's declaring his conscientious objection on 20th November.

Mon
20
Nov

Researching Pop Culture and Militarism: What is normal?

Researching Pop Culture and Militarism: What is normal?

"Human beings are consumers of vast quantities of raw materials and fuels. A tremendous amount of waste materials results from this use--individual, societal, industrial, and accidental."1

Is this sentence a fact, or an opinion? When starting a sentence with "human beings are..." or "human nature is...", who determines whether what is being said is fact or fiction? History? One’s own experiences or philosophy? Is there such a thing as normal human behavior anyway?

In the following article, we'll discuss how "normal" beliefs, actions, and practices are not, despite being often assumed to be so, universally defined. They are products of a specific context, and are often used to judge others outside of it.

English translation unavailable for .

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