Manchester Metropolitan University's Research Repository

    “The Great Crusade”: D-day in American culture c.1944–2001

    Edwards, S ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-1433-8243 (2021) “The Great Crusade”: D-day in American culture c.1944–2001. International Journal of Military History and Historiography, 41 (2). pp. 247-276. ISSN 2468-3299

    Accepted Version
    Download (353kB) | Preview


    Focusing on political speech, commemorative ceremonies, and various cultural media (especially historiography, memorials and films), this article explores the discursive construction within American culture of D-Day – the Allied invasion of France in June 1944 – as “crusade”, that is, as an example of a righteous and redemptive mission undertaken in the name of God in order to deliver the oppressed peoples of Europe from the darkness and evil of Nazi rule. The article traces the origins of this rhetorical framing during the war itself, before shifting to examine its fortunes, lines and limits through to the end of the twentieth century. The article furthers our understanding of exactly how D-Day has been represented in American culture, and it teases out what might be termed a chronology of cultural traction. In doing so, it identifies those moments in which the linkage between D-Day and “crusading” has been firmly expressed as well as those other moments in which this linkage became rather more subterranean and subsumed, often remaining detectable only via inference or through careful attention to some of the images, ideas and narrative themes deployed in speech and ceremony.

    Impact and Reach


    Activity Overview
    6 month trend
    6 month trend

    Additional statistics for this dataset are available via IRStats2.


    Repository staff only

    Edit record Edit record