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Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department / School


First Advisor

Jason McEntee


In this thesis, I explore the inability of the warrior to repatriate into society in post-9/11 war narratives. I utilize examples from a vast array of mediums including literature, film, and video games. I argue that this difficulty reintegrating stems from several forms of loss. These forms of loss are: loss of the self, loss of the warrior, and loss of combat. In the chapter discussing loss of the self, I discuss not only the physical death of the protagonist warrior but also his/her emotional and physical wounds that prevent him/her from repatriating into a domestic state. In the chapter on loss of the fellow warrior, I, again, expand this terminology to include more than the physical death of the fellow warrior; it comes to include the effects of a warrior no longer having fellow warriors around him/her once he/she returns to the domestic state. In the chapter on loss of combat, I discuss both the loss of the fight and the warrior’s actual longing for the rush of combat. I argue that these narratives demonstrate that “flawless victory” is no longer possible and that such narratives increasingly call into question the ability to truly win a war.In employing a multi-medium approach, I assert that the narratives surrounding the new wars vary from the more tradition forms of narrative that surrounded older wars. We must take the time to understand the way the rhetoric of these newer mediums infiltrates our society to not only function as a means of showing us the wars but also constructing our views about these wars.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Veterans in literature
Veterans in motion pictures
Loss (Psychology) in literature
Loss (Psychology) in motion pictures
Video games
War stories


Includes bibliographical references (pages 122-125)



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


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