The Kiss : A Symbol Of Nationalism And Hope

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Brilliantly said, “The Kiss” provides us a memorable candid of what the end of World War II is – a symbol of nationalism and hope. Now, not all critics share Kimmelman’s opinion. “The Kiss” can be interpreted as a glimpse into the future of less restrained sexuality in American culture. The photograph raises awareness on the ideological structures dominant of its time: women were acted upon, rather than acting; race was inconspicuous as the world worth rescuing appeared to be a white world. The photograph not only celebrates the end of the war, but the ‘white’ commoners who won it (Hariman and Lucaites). Nonetheless, the social turbulence is just starting. “Culture is the place where people draw on common resources to affirm, contest, negotiate, understand, and legitimize social practices/government policies” (Cosgrove). Historians rely on culture to understand the social structure and way of life from times past. American culture, as perceived in “The Kiss," is a white society nationalistic and sacred to the foundation of the country. In World War II, African American soldiers fight as hard as the whites, but their skin tone keeps their bravery and heroism from America’s eyes. Discrimination against Japanese, Italians, and Germans continues relentlessly – from “Anti-Japanese Movements, alien prohibition laws, and Immigrations Acts (1924)… oppression against immigrants and anyone not considered ‘Anglo-Saxon’ [is] not welcomed” (Ng 29). These are only a few of many ways the

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