Tyler Pineau



Faculty Advisor

Robin Tapley


The paper will be concerned with the explanation of the Western Hero Myth (WHM) as laid out by Terence De Pres in The Survivor. This is a book that explores the concentration camps of WW2 from a philosophical perspective. One of De Pres' main goals is to break down assumptions about persons in extremity made by those from the safety of a stable society. To this end, he exposes the erroneous sacrificial nature of the WHM that contrasts starkly with reality. The argument presented by De Pres will be applied to the nature of women's roles on the “back lines” of many wars. Contrasts will be made and connections will be drawn between the front line soldiers and the women who support them, who cannot escape but must grow, learn, and live with war as a constant presence. Counter-arguments will also be addressed. Among those will be the prima facie reaction that front-line men are lessened by giving respect to women and by shedding light on their role in war. The idea that the argument forces women in war into a cage of traditional gender roles will also be addressed.

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Philosophy Commons