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Iron Giant and the Cold War

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on 28 May 2014

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Transcript of Iron Giant and the Cold War

Assume its Russian!
Befriends the Giant and saves the Day!
“Before the war America depicted the Soviet union as Devil like. Americans seen as devil like by Soviet Union as well. World War 2 created a common enemy (Germany) so there was a time of friendship” (Trueman)

Fear of anything Foreign
Hogarth the Hero
Media Effects
Hogarth is very patriotic which we can only assume he got from his father. He believes in doing the right thing, saving the day, and protecting those that need it. Hogarth likes to point out that he's american and even says at one point that he's the "luckiest kid in America", when the phrase would typically end with "in the world". When the Army is giving the violent terrorizing Giant everything they have it's Hogarth who saves the day by simply yelling at him. This shows the patriotic stereotype that being American and proud is enough to take the Russian enemy down, even if you're a child.
Cultural Imperialism
The Iron Giant
pushes America as the "good guy" and Russia as the "bad guy". We see Russia through an eastern point of view and not the western.
The Iron Giant
shows societies enemy and hero as Russia and America respectively. It portrays what society should value.
By Sharon and Justus
October, 1957
Vol XCIII, No. 311
Not actually a war!
What was the Cold War?
The Iron Giant
The Cold War wasn't an actual war, but tension between the Soviet Union and the United States. Tensions ran high after World War II due to many factors, but mainly due to the conflicting ideals of the two nations. The nations became suspicious of each other and their power. This lead to an arms race to see which nation could create better technology faster. The nations never got into real conflict though. A Cold War means a war not physically but just words and tensions. The movie
The Iron Giant
focuses on the arms race and the U.S's fear of falling behind. We see this right off the bat with the opening scene of the Russian satellite

The Iron Giant
takes place in Maine during 1957. The main character Hogarth is a young boy who lost his father in the army. His mother is the only one raising him and works constantly to support the family. This leaves Hogarth lonely and longing for a companion. He soon meets his companion the Iron Giant. He befriends this creature believing it to have come from space and teaches it how to talk and right from wrong. While spending time with his new friend he is also trying to keep him hidden from the U.S government.

We see two main themes related to the Cold war throughout this movie. They are to fear all things foreign, which we see through Kent Mansley (the government man), and to be patriotic as seen through Hogarths character.
Iron Giant and the Cold War
Kent Mansley fears the worst when investigating
The Iron Giant
and the worst means Russia. Russia is rarely referenced directly but it comes briefly in dialogue and background images. The Iron Giant himself is the embodiment of the fear of foreign nations potential with technology. While many in the movie claim the Giant came from space that is the crazy answer and the logical conclusion is that the Giant is from "Russia, China, or even Canada."
While we never see a Russian character directly we see the stereotype that they are the enemy and they should be feared.
Works Cited

Propaganda Techniques
They use Hogarths comics and the Giant to transfer the idea of danger and weapons over to the Russian image.
Plain Folks
The character of Hogarth is a typical child who saves the world from the possibly Russian threat, yet he's just your typical all American kid.
Full transcript