Nuclear myths and social discourse: the U.S. decision to pursue nuclear weapons
Williams, David L.
MetadataShow full item record
Why do countries want nuclear weapons? This question has plagued non- proliferation and U.S. intelligence experts since the beginning of the nuclear era. Motivations for nuclear weapons typically are viewed as the product of external variables (perceived insecurity, prestige, etc.). This thesis asserts that a different level of analysis is appropriate. It is a society's beliefs about nuclear technology that at least partially explains nuclear proliferation. The 1939 U.S. decision to develop nuclear weapons is examined in light of early American beliefs about nuclear technology. I show that various cultural texts and statements by influential elites made policy makers believe in the military utility of nuclear energy. If these texts and statements had not existed, President Roosevelt might not have launched the Manhattan Project
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Arbuckle, Larry J. (Monterey, California. Naval Postgraduate School, 2008-06);The state of the world is such that the pace of nuclear weapons proliferation appears to be increasing. The growing number of nuclear states and amount of nuclear material available poses a great challenge to those that ...
Womack, Seth M. (Monterey, California: Naval Postgraduate School, 2014-09);This thesis examines the roles of the U.S. Army in America’s nuclear undertakings. Since 1942, when the Army took responsibility for managing the Manhattan Project, the Army has made many important contributions to America’s ...
Preczewski, Michael W. (Monterey, California: Naval Postgraduate School, 2016-09);This thesis explores the relative value that norms have on U.S. nuclear policies, particularly on their constraining effect on nuclear weapon use and possession. Contemporary academic literature explores how norms constrain ...