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Memorials for the living : a cross-cultural analysis of mythology & representations of the Battle of the Atlantic 1939-1945


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Campbell, Ian 2000 , 'Memorials for the living : a cross-cultural analysis of mythology & representations of the Battle of the Atlantic 1939-1945', Unspecified thesis, University of Tasmania.

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This thesis examines representations resulting from the Battle of the Atlantic.
Representations of the Second World War have changed little since 1950; there has been
even less in portrayals of the Atlantic Campaign. Participant's experiences were distilled into
myths: the essence of the events and emotions. Portrayals were written mainly by
participants. They embodied what those participants wanted to recall and communicate, and
continuity dominated movement in both representation and interpretation.
The readily available primary sources tell us little about postwar perceptions of the
Atlantic. Secondary sources have been used for the first time to define, describe and
illustrate military and civilian mythologies of the Atlantic Battle from many countries, principally
Britain, Germany, Canada and the United States of America. How and why participants and
others created sense and relationships with their experiences through myth is explained. The
limited penetration of popular culture by these portrayals explain their position among other
recollections of modern wars.
The sources of these mythologies in maritime culture and their origin during the Great
War are shown. Their change and development through Second World War activities and
national needs are traced. Without those national needs, postwar limitations upon authors
and audiences, as well as the effects of the concentration of public memory upon other
things, led to relative ignorance and isolation. The portrayals still embodied participants'
After the Second World War types of representation and commemoration were
defined and established. New sources and new interest in the subject after 1974 are
demonstrated. These diverted interest and activity. Recent anniversaries and writing reveal
the broad range of types of representation among several media, increasing academic depth
and sophistication, and the healthy prospects for further elaboration and exploration.
Change has been brought by the desire of new, younger non-participants to rework and
reinterpret old events and myths in order to achieve greater understanding, and promote more
awareness and commemoration of relatively neglected people and their times.

Item Type: Thesis - Unspecified
Authors/Creators:Campbell, Ian
Keywords: Merchant marine, World War, 1939-1945
Copyright Holders: The Author
Additional Information:

Thesis (M.A.)--University of Tasmania, 2000. Includes bibliographical references

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