Dynamic Intersection of Military and Society
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The military and society interact and shape each other every day. This chapter examines the diverse, interdisciplinary field of study that seeks to understand and explain that interaction. It begins by defining and situating the field’s origin story in military sociology and political science. Key scholars and events are highlighted to show how the field evolved as the world moved from the Cold War to the War on Terror and beyond. During that time the scope of the field grew incorporating scholars from around the world and across an array of disciplines. The chapter then narrows to discuss key topics central to the field – civil military relations, public opinion/popular culture, recruitment and retention, minority representation (women, minorities, LGBTQ), military families, and veterans’ studies. The chapter ends with a discussion and examples of the methods scholars use to study established and emerging research questions.