War in Film, TV, and History
November 11-14, 2004 Anti-War, Anti-Authoritarian War Film Comedies and Parodies
From the Marx Brothers= Duck Soup to Dr. Strangelove, or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb, and to M*A*S*H, Catch-22, Good Morning, Vietnam, and the recent No Man=s Land, there exists a sub-genre of war films which either parody war conventions and/or depict the absurdity of war itself. Although this sub-genre of films is often labeled Ablack comedy," because of the portrayal of darkly humorous wartime situations, these films are also characterized by an irreverent, anti-authoritarian, and antagonistic wit and sentiment.
What exactly defines a war film comedy and a black comedy war film? What type of characters, themes, and stories comprise this sub-genre? What does the popularity of certain war comedies say about the public=s perception of war, military service, and social authority in specific historical periods? How do these films, many of them adapted from literary sources, link up with particular undercurrents of social thought in American and Western cultures? What role do these films serve in providing social commentary and critique during times of war? Can a war film that contains parodic and satirical elements still be called a war film?
The Film & History League, with the Literature/Film Association, will be holding its conference on AWar in Film, Television, and History@ during November 11-14, 2004, near Dallas, TX. Full details on the location, registration procedures, and additional area topics can be found on the website www.filmandhistory.org. Deadline for proposals is July 30, 2004.
Chair for Anti-War, Anti-Authoritarian War Film Comedies and Parodies is Dr. David Pierson.
Dr. David P. Pierson
Interim Director of Media Studies
University of Southern Maine
19 Chamberlain Avenue
Portland, ME 04104-9300
Send comments and questions to H-Net
Webstaff. H-Net reproduces announcements that have been submitted to us as a
free service to the academic community. If you are interested in an announcement
listed here, please contact the organizers or patrons directly. Though we strive
to provide accurate information, H-Net cannot accept responsibility for the text of
announcements appearing in this service. (Administration)