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Grant number: FT-249230-16

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Jessica L. Ghilani
University of Pittsburgh, Greensburg Campus (Greensburg, PA 15601)

Advertising for US Army Volunteers since 1914

Research and manuscript revisions leading to publication of a book on the history of twentieth-century recruitment advertising by the U.S. Army.

"Selling Soldiering: Advertising for US Army Volunteers since 1914" is a book publication under contract with University of Iowa Press. In it I argue that the origins of volunteer military recruitment strategies and sales pitches can be detected deep into the history of 20th century conscription, before the draft's overturn in 1973. I reveal that recruiting appeals made to women as well as to other targeted demographic groups depended more on the surrounding social and political contexts than the recruitment model used to fill military ranks. Advertisements for army service served significant public relations purposes beyond just that of filling ranks. I examine the cultural influence of army advertisements on the civilian public's perceptions, the recruited soldiers' expectations, and the enlisted soldiers' experiences of military service. Such representations deeply inform public opinions, assumptions, and notions of civic obligation over time.

[Media coverage]

Project fields:
American Studies; Communications; Media Studies

Summer Stipends

Research Programs

Total amounts:
$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
5/1/2016 – 6/30/2016