The Purpose of Study: This article aims to understand the compositional methods used in the propaganda. In this sense, the central theme of this study is to understand how heroism was portrayed in the posters of the Great War propaganda in the United States.
Literature Review/Background: The way heroism is portrayed in the Great War propaganda posters is the main topic of this paper. Propaganda in this sense is understood as a means aimed at manipulating information so that public opinion conforms to the propagandist's intentions.
Method: In this paper, it is believed that the study of posters depicting heroism will deepen the study of propaganda and its use as an instrument of deception. Because the phenomenon of heroism occupies an important place in cultures, it has been discussed in detail in a separate section. The posters discussed in the study were analyzed using the semiotic analysis of Roland Barthes.
Results: The depiction of heroism on the Great War propaganda posters underpins its narratives in both direct and indirect expression. The direct messages of heroism were mainly accompanied by slogans that combined religious idealism, morality, a noble cause, honor, and justice. The indirect messages, on the other hand, were associated with themes of unity, desirability, journey, and duty. In addition, the depiction of heroism was directed at women and children, who were referred to as the 'home front.'
Conclusion: In poster propaganda in the United States, the distinction between good as 'our' side and evil as 'their' side is obvious. It has been noted that the use of heroism in propaganda posters at the most critical moments of the Great War was a crucial element, as its depiction reduced the war to an abstract metaphor rather than conveying the harsh reality of war.