Norman Mailer's seminal works The Naked and the Dead and The Armies of the Night both outline Mailers distaste for oppression. The Naked and the Dead's bleak reprisal of oppressive leadership tactics offers little in the way of a solution to fight this power. However, twenty years later, The Armies of the Night names personal expression of political views as the answer to oppressive force within the American government. Mailer met the hypocrisy of fighting for freedom abroad while oppressing one's own citizens by encouraging personal expression and flaunting the "rules" of the novel. In the end, Mailer surmises that the best way to encourage freedom of thought and action is to educate his fellow citizens to question objectivity.
College and Department
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Onofrio, Benjamin E., "American Totalitarianism in Norman Mailer's The Naked and the Dead and The Armies of the Night" (2009). All Theses and Dissertations. 1806.
Norman Mailer, totalitarianism, oppression