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Teaching War Movies in the Classroom: The Human Factor

Page history last edited by Jeff 9 years, 11 months ago

When teaching war movies in the classroom, it is important to stress that war is not to be universally glorified or condemned; the examples of both just and unjust wars throughout history are legion and cannot sway the issue one way or the other.  Rather, the focus of the activity should be on the personal issues at stake during wartime—humanity, compassion, innocence, etc.  A good way to do this would be to show the film Full Metal Jacket.  There are examples of both the glorification and the condemnation of war, and the soldiers on the front lines had to begin as normal, everyday people before they became hardened U.S. Marines.  Private Joker in particular is an excellent example of a character who undergoes the loss of innocence while under fire; students should pay particular attention to his reactions to the various situations he encounters, then try to explain why he reacted the way he did.


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