At war with memory: national versus local interpretations of Vietnam Veterans Memorials

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Lavallee, Sarah Elaine
Price, Jay M., 1969-

Sarah Lavallee. (2012). At War with Memory: National versus Local Interpretations of Vietnam Veterans Memorials. -- In Proceedings: 8th Annual Symposium: Graduate Research and Scholarly Projects. Wichita, KS: Wichita State University, p.92-93


Much of the literature surrounding the public memory of the Vietnam War focuses exclusively on the National Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., creating the impression that all Vietnam memorials carry the same message of a bitter war and entrenched in public debate. However, this narrow scope excludes smaller memorials created by individual cities for local soldiers. The difference between national and local war memorials produces significant variations in meaning, motivation, and public perception. A continuing issue facing war memorials are the changes in visitors and how to convey the meaning to new generations. Though built at approximately the same time, the Winfield Vietnam Veterans Memorial stands as a counter-point to the national dialog created by the Washington D.C. monument. By ignoring other facets of Vietnam remembrance, a complete survey of public memory, or even opinion, cannot be concluded.

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Third Place winner of poster presentations at the 8th Annual Symposium on Graduate Research and Scholarly Projects (GRASP) held at the Marcus Welcome Center, Wichita State University, April 18, 2012.
Research completed at the Department of History, Fairmount College of Liberal Arts and Sciences