Pre-enacting the next war: the visual culture of Danish civil defence in the early nuclear age

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    Abstract

    During the 1950s and early 1960s, civil defence sought to anticipate the next war and ensure the survival of civil society. Authorities had to adjust to developments in both military and communication technologies continuously. The article studies the visual culture of Danish civil defence by zooming in on the entanglements of technology, visuality, narrative and function. The author argues that this visual culture is characterised by the practice and visual technique of pre-enactment. Having developed this concept, the article analyses the projection of civil defence in recruitment films, educational filmstrips and public information aimed at mass audiences.

    Original languageEnglish
    JournalCold War History
    Volume22
    Issue number1
    Pages (from-to)79-102
    ISSN1468-2745
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 12. Jan 2022

    Keywords

    • Civil defence
    • Denmark
    • film
    • filmstrips
    • nuclear war
    • nuclear weapons
    • public information
    • visual culture

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