Date of Award
Bachelor of Arts
JFK, presidential campaign, fontier, image
The motivation for this project came from my desire to investigate the substance behind President John F. Kennedy’s careful self‐presentation during his presidential campaign and incumbency, and to demonstrate how his memory is still prevalent in today’s society. I applied Robert Slotkin’s language from Gunfighter Nation: The Myth of the Frontier in TwentiethCentury America as a framework to my discussion on the language Kennedy conveyed to the American public, starting with his creation of the New Frontier at the 1960 Democratic National Convention. By establishing an image evocative of the American Frontier and hero‐tales, Kennedy constructed a site for which the American public could witness an ideological historical narrative play out, a public arena to which Slotkin refers as mythic space. I attempt to show how this space is extended to the Kennedy White House, and how it is preserved in the monumental John F. Kennedy Library and Museum in Boston, MA.
Gentile, Marissa R., "The Mythic Space of the New Frontier: The Façade of The White House Tour and Visual Culture of the JFK Library and Museum" (2011). Honors Theses. 981.