Curating and re-curating the American wars in Vietnam and Iraq (2019)

in: Oxford scholarship online

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Christine Sylvester's book considers locations of war knowledge that are often overlooked by scholars in the social sciences and also by civilians who have an interest in understanding these wars. She takes readers to the permanent exhibition of war at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History, to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial and its traveling facsimile, to Section 60 of the Arlington National Cemetery where military killed in Iraq are buried, and to well-regarded novels and memoirs about these wars. Across vastly different sites of war knowledge, Sylvester considers whose war appears where, how it is curated, and whether some sites re-curate commonplace understandings of these wars by highlighting experiences war experts can neglect.