THE FRIEND OF MY ENEMY IS A BUSH: Signs of Tropicality in American popular culture in the years following the Vietnam War (1980s-2010s).
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This thesis studies how American creators chose to depict nature in their own version of the Vietnam War. The method used for analysing these depictions is Tropicality. The Anglophone idea of Tropicality was developed from Edward Said’s Orientalism. Its use comes from its ability to detect underlying meanings and mentalities behind certain depictions of Tropical nature. Tropicalized nature can be seen as depictions of conflicting nature, nature harming people, and nature being used as a tool for harm. The approach is to investigate the decades of the 1980s-2010s and the Tropicalization that occurred during this period. The depictions of Tropicalization from this period will be compared to how the international relations between the United States and Vietnam were in each decade in order to link changes in international relations to changes in depictions. This thesis concludes with the fact that the amount of Tropicalization and style of Tropicalization that is occurring does seemingly have a connection to international relations. This is apparent by the fact that when the United States and Vietnam are getting along, the harshness in the Tropicalization decreases and so does the amount of it. What is furthermore discovered is that there are many causes for this, and this thesis is one approach to answering why Tropicalization happens.