Intervention Narratives
234 pages, 6 x 9
1 b-w photographs
Release Date:17 Jan 2020
Release Date:17 Jan 2020
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Intervention Narratives

Afghanistan, the United States, and the Global War on Terror

SERIES: War Culture
Rutgers University Press
Intervention Narratives examines the contradictory cultural representations of the US intervention in Afghanistan that help to justify an imperial foreign policy. These narratives involve projecting Afghans as brave anti-communist warriors who suffered the consequences of American disengagement with the region following the end of the Cold War, as victimized women who can be empowered through enterprise, as innocent dogs who need to be saved by US soldiers, and as terrorists who deserve punishment for 9/11. Given that much of public political life now involves affect rather than knowledge, feelings rather than facts, familiar recurring tropes of heroism, terrorism, entrepreneurship, and canine love make the war easier to comprehend and elicit sympathy for US military forces. An indictment of US policy, Bose demonstrates that contemporary imperialism operates on an ideologically diverse cultural terrain to enlist support for the war across the political spectrum.
PURNIMA BOSE is associate professor of English and international studies at Indiana University in Bloomington, and also serves as chairperson of the international studies department. Her publications include Organizing Empire: Individualism, Collective Agency & India and co-edited volumes with Laura E. Lyons: Cultural Critique and the Global Corporation and a special issue of Biography on “Corporate Personhood.”


Acronyms ix


Intervention Narratives and Geopolitical Fetishism

1 The Premature-Withdrawal Narrative

Hegemonic Masculinities and the Liberal Humanist Subject

2 The Capitalist-Rescue Narrative

Afghan Women and Micro-Entrepreneurship

3 The Canine-Rescue Narrative

and Post-Humanist Humanitarianism

4 The Retributive-Justice Narrative

Osama bin Laden as Simulacra

Postscript: Three Presidents, One Policy




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