Camp all-American, Hanoi Jane, and the High-and-Tight: Gender, Folklore, and Changing Military Culture

TitleCamp all-American, Hanoi Jane, and the High-and-Tight: Gender, Folklore, and Changing Military Culture
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2005
AuthorsBurke, Carol
Number of Pages286
PublisherBeacon Press
CityBoston
Abstract

For decades scandals about women in the military have persisted, from Tailhook and Aberdeen to reports of sexual assaults and misconduct in the U.S. Naval Academy, the U.S. Army, and, recently, in the U.S. Air Force Academy as well. In this bold and unflinching book, Carol Burke tries to figure out why this keeps happening. Burke explores the minute ways that "the cult of masculinity" persists in all branches of the United States military today, and she unearths fascinating details and offers eye-opening anecdotes about basic training, military dress and speech, the history of the marching chant, the disdain some veterans still harbor for Jane Fonda, and the colorful-and sometimes questionable-rituals of military manhood. She argues that acts of harassment keep recurring because historically the military has been "what made a man of you"-in other words, an exclusionary all-male institution. But, Burke contends, military culture is made-not born-and now it's time that the military consciously changed its policy of "gendered apartheid" so it can evolve into the gender-, race-, and sexuality-neutral democratic institution it deserves to be.

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