Michael Messner

Ethel-Jane Westfeldt Bunting Summer Scholar


Guys Like Me: Six Wars, Six Veterans for Peace

Michael Messner, 2016 Summer ScholarMichael Messner, 2016 Summer Scholar© School for Advanced ResearchMichael Messner, 2016 Summer Scholar© School for Advanced Research

Men, masculinity, and militarism are often seen to be in close (and mythically heroic) correspondence; thus, the war veteran-as-peace-advocate is sometimes viewed as an oxymoron. This is precisely what interests Messner. “Guys Like Me” is a life-history study of six U.S. men, combat veterans of WW II, Korea, Vietnam, Gulf, Afghanistan and Iraq wars, who became lifelong advocates for peace. The study foregrounds the six men’s first-person narratives as windows into the salient ways that wartime trauma, embedded in the body and in memory, punctuates the entire life course of a war veteran-turned peace advocate. Of particular analytic importance in this study is the concept of “intersectional embodiment,” through which Messner will illuminate ways that gender, race, and class play out over the life course, as men navigate shifting social contexts. He hopes that the resultant book will be broadly relevant in peace and conflict studies, intersectional gender studies, and for people working in the peace movement.

Affiliation at time of award:
Professor, Department of Sociology and Gender Studies, University of Southern California

Follow us: