Pro Patria Mori: Patriotism in Film & Television

full name / name of organization: 
Cynthia Miller/Film & History
contact email: 

Call for Papers
"Pro Patria Mori: Patriotism in Film and Television"
2010 Film & History Conference: Representation of Love in Film and Television
November 11-14, 2010
Hyatt Regency Milwaukee
Second-Round Deadline: November 1, 2009

AREA: Pro Patria Mori: Patriotism in Film and Television

Patriotism—the love of nation or country—is an abstract and malleable term, lending itself to many forms of expression and exploitation, not only by the individual but also by the group or nation itself. As both mindset and zeitgeist, "patriotism" influences filmmaking in remarkably complex ways, from militaristic propaganda to romantic allegory to cartoon farce. Lovers of countries are sometimes lovers of ideas, lovers of great social causes, lovers of anarchy, or lovers secretly of themselves.

What genres of film or characterizations of patriotic types lend themselves best to these considerations? What specific ideologies do these films promote, and what sub-cultural movements might they engender? When might filmic representations of patriotism be considered relics of propagandistic vainglory? How does love of one's country become more—or less—than honorable once a filmmaker sets in motion the actual patriot?

This area, comprising multiple panels, welcomes papers and panel proposals that examine all forms and genres of films featuring performances of patriotism/love of country. Possibilities include, but are not limited to, the following topics:

• Not-James-BOND: Liberty Loan Propaganda (The Bond, Johanna Enlists, Swat the Kaiser, Lillian Gish in a Liberty Loan Appeal)
• Rebel Love (Easy Rider, Nashville, The Man Who Would Be King, Birth of a Nation)
• "Once more into the Breech!": Military Patriotism (The Fighting 49th, Wings, The Big Parade, Shoulder Arms, Sergeant York, They Were Expendable, Destination Tokyo)
• Big Stick Patriotism (The Wind and the Lion, Gunga Din, The King and I)
• Love for Sale: Mercenary Patriotism (Beau Geste, Rambo)
• über-Patriotism or Zealous Patriotism (any of the above)

Please send your 250-word proposal by email to the area chair:

Lisa K. Stein
Ohio University-Zanesville
1425 Newark Road
Zanesville, OH 43701
Email: (email submissions preferred)

Panel proposals for up to four presenters are also welcome, but each presenter must submit his or her own paper proposal. For updates and registration information about the upcoming meeting, see the Film & History website (