Letters Home: Themes and Messages in Soldier Songs of the Second Iraq War

Daniel P Jansen


Country music has a long tradition of war-related songs dating back at least to the Civil War and is present today in the context of the current war in Iraq. Amid the many jingoistic songs in this category is a subgenre referred to in this study as “soldier songs.” Since WWII, soldier songs have retained an important place in country music during subsequent periods of war because of their personal reflections on the tragedies of war. The appearance of soldier songs in relation to the timeline of the war, in combination with the personality of the recording artist, is significant to how the audience receive the song. The main objective of this study is the analysis of the messages and contexts of modern soldier songs, which support the troops but not necessarily the war, and establish a sort of political middle ground that can be appropriated by both sides of the political spectrum.


Country Music; Soldier Songs

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15695/vurj.v4i0.2776

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