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Uncle Sam Wants YouWorld War I and the Making of the Modern American Citizen$
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Christopher Capozzola

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195335491

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195335491.001.0001

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Conclusion: Armistice and After

Conclusion: Armistice and After

(p.206) Conclusion: Armistice and After
Uncle Sam Wants You

Christopher Capozzola (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter presents some concluding thoughts about the impact of World War I on America. The war demanded moral resources, political capital, and even the very flesh and bones of national citizens. The war was also a crucial moment in the history of American political culture in the 20th century, part of a massive and sometimes contradictory restructuring of the relationship between Americans and state power — indeed, of the basic terms of American citizenship itself. The history of Americans' wartime obligations brings several themes into focus: the changing relationship between individuals, voluntary associations, and the state; the connections between duties and rights in theory and political experience; and the role of law and political violence in everyday life. It also helps explain some of the legacies of the wartime experience for later generations of Americans.

Keywords:   World War I, wartime America, voluntarism, obligation, political culture, American citizenship

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