Media, War and Postmodernity  book cover
1st Edition

Media, War and Postmodernity

ISBN 9780203934173
Published October 10, 2007 by Routledge
192 Pages

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Book Description

Media, War and Postmodernity investigates how conflict and international intervention have changed since the end of the Cold War, asking why Western military operations are now conducted as high-tech media spectacles, apparently more important for their propaganda value than for any strategic aims.

Discussing the humanitarian interventions of the 1990s and the War on Terror, the book analyzes the rise of a postmodern sensibility in domestic and international politics, and explores how the projection of power abroad is undermined by a lack of cohesion and purpose at home. Drawing together debates from a variety of disciplinary and theoretical perspectives, Philip Hammond argues that contemporary warfare may be understood as 'postmodern' in that it is driven by the collapse of grand narratives in Western societies and constitutes an attempt to recapture a sense of purpose and meaning.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Postmodernism and 9/11  1. Postmodern War in a World without Meaning  2. The Humanitarian Spectacle  3. The Media War on Terrorism  4. Culture Wars and the Post-Vietnam Condition  5. Security and Vulnerability in the 'Risk Society'  6. Postmodern Empire and the 'Death of the Subject'.  Conclusion: Beyond Postmodernity

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Philip Hammond is Reader in Media and Communications at London South Bank University. He is the author of Framing Post-Cold War Conflicts (2007) and co-editor, with Edward S. Herman, of Degraded Capability: The Media and the Kosovo Crisis (2000).


'Media, War and Postmodernity is an important book that explains how 'weak values' in the West have a tragic habit of provoking violence in the most unexpected of places.' Frank Furedi, The Spiked Review of Books

'An invaluable guide' - 7 Days

'Hammond provides an excellent discussion of  contemporary warfare...[and] makes a difficult subject accesible and engaging.  Would you recommend it?  Yes.' - Times Higher Educational Supplement