Accession Number:



The Abongo Abroad: Military Internationalism, Travel, Training, and Peace in Ghana and the United States, 1960-1992

Descriptive Note:

Technical Report

Corporate Author:

University of Kansas Lawrence United States

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:


Pagination or Media Count:



This dissertation searches the global commodities of military education and training assistance and international peacekeeping missions between the 1960s and 1980s for the meaning people on both the sending and receiving ends made of the international experience. For Ghanaian soldiers and their families and for American communities around large institutions for military education, training and service abroad paradoxically eroded national identities while creating new global citizens, within limits, as individuals and families developed transnational friendships and reaped social and financial benefits from the exchange. It argues that all participants in the global system of military-sponsored international travel approached the act with different ideas about what the travel signified, what opportunities it presented, and what change it intended to bring about, but all participants believed the travel inspired or revealed a new psychological orientation capable of transcending national boundaries and actualizing a global identity, which I call Military Internationalism. States and national policymakers appealed to such a transnational identity when forming, sustaining, and justifying international military exchanges including education, training, and peacekeeping. Policymakers in both the United States and Ghana assumed that international travel, especially for military elites or potential elites, could yield corporate transformation and modernization to recipient states entire societies, via the military. Those advancements only occurred after individual transformations. Individual actors manifested Military Internationalism when they imagined themselves part of a global community that was sometimes smaller, sometimes larger than their respective nation-states. Around American institutions for military education, the community structures that evolved to welcome, instruct, and socialize visiting military personnel and their families flourished on their unofficia

Subject Categories:

Distribution Statement: