Reading Response

1. If militarization is more than just joining the military and participating in war (p. 2), then what else does militarization entail? How does Enloe use the example of the can of soup to explain what she means by “militarization”?

            From what I got from the reading, I can surmise that Enloe is hinting towards militarization as a process and a vehicle. It is not constant; it is always evolving in between the cracks of our understanding about our culture and cultural values. Militarization is the acceptance of military activity and militaristic methodology and schools of thought and the acceptance of these as “normal and unproblematic”. Therefore, viewing these star wars noodles in the realm of something more geared toward propagandist ideas and less about nutrition. This soup is targeted at the consumer which is a mother willing to bring it home to a child (most likely a male). The soup taps into her instincts to give her child what they will most likely enjoy, and a subconscious recognition of the importance and esteem the military through the vehicle of these god-forsaken noodles.

5. How might you apply Enloe’s insights to what you found in the Observing Militarization exercise?

Well, I am happy I went with my inclination to view the Dirt Devil toy as a form of militarization. At first I thought it was a far stretch to assume that this item was in any way militarized but now, using the reading, I see how it is militarized in that it inhibits the “militarized thought” Enloe was talking about. It is incredibly pervasive and hard to uproot but the reason why this toy markets well towards young females is that they are being pushed by many forces to stay home and maintain their homes. These pressures create flocks of women determined on maintaining this social order/ gender role. These toys embellish the life of the soon-to-be house wife


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