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ResearchPaperRoughDraft - Chris Stanton D SOC 112 Research...

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Chris Stanton December 4, 2006 D SOC 112: Research Paper Rough Draft The Military’s Most Powerful Weapon The militarization that occurs every day all around the country frequently is undetected by the average citizen. Unless you have studied the topic, you will not understand what militarization looks like or how it is used. Militarization of advertising has been one of the most powerful tactics that the military uses to boost recruitment and retention. This paper will examine this major form of militarization by investigating the relationship between Hollywood and the Pentagon. It is imperative to understand how the Pentagon uses major Hollywood productions for the military’s benefit. There are certain advantages and disadvantages to having the Pentagon’s support of a film, and my research focused on the elements of a film that is supported by the Pentagon. Films that are trying to reenact a series of military events, usually depicting heroism or American triumph, tell an individual’s story, or involve a socially or historically accepted event will generally benefit from seeking the Pentagon’s support of the film. Most people that have not had the chance to examine militarization in detail do not understand the process or why the Pentagon approves films. My research not only examines why the Pentagon approves films, but also what aspects the Pentagon is looking for in a movie that it is supporting. Censorship is just one consequence of having the military’s support and although it may not occur frequently, it is still an aspect of militarization that occurs within the film industry. By understanding the complex process of militarization, people will become aware of the different forms of militarization that take shape in the relationship between Hollywood and the pentagon.
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Before critically examining the relationship between Hollywood and the Pentagon, you must first have an understanding of what militarization is. Militarization affects many aspects of American culture, including areas such as popular culture, education, and citizenship. Since militarization encompasses political, social, and economic aspects, it can be very complex in certain situations. A very broad definition of militarization is the progression by which certain aspects of daily life become more influenced by the military. The militarization of Hollywood is a very powerful tool for advertising and it allows the military to let the public see what “military life” is like (or what the military wants the public to see). Much of the debate over whether movies should or should not be approved by the Pentagon frequently occurs over this issue of what the military wants the public to know. Censorship is a problem associated with military involvement in films, and is also sometimes a consequence of seeking Pentagon approval.
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