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A book about the meaning of travel, about how important the topic has been for writers for two and a half centuries, and about how excellent the literature of travel happened to be in England and America in the 1920s and 30s.
A curmudgeonly look at American culture in the 80s/90s, intent on demonstrating how monstrously bad much of it was.
Fussell writes: Please note that this is not The Official Boy Scout Handbook. It is a collection of my essays and reviews and bagatelles on appearances, institutions, and society, writers, travel, and war written over the past fifteen years or so, and written on very different occasions and for different purposes.
Based in part on the author's own experiences, "The Boys' Crusade" provides a stirring narrative of what the war was actually like, from the point of view of the children --- for children they were --- who fought it. While dealing definitively with issues of strategy, leadership, context, and tactics, Fussell has an additional purpose: to tear away the veil of feel-good mythology that so often obscures and sanitizes war's brutal essence. Accordingly, he eschews every kind of sentimentalism, focusing instead on the raw action and human emotion triggered by the intimacy, horror, and intense sorrows of war, and honestly addressing the errors, waste, fear, misery, and resentments that plagued both sides. In the vast literature on World War II, The Boys' Crusade stands wholly apart. Fussell's profoundly honest portrayal of these boy soldiers underscores their bravery even as it deepens our awareness of their experiences. This book is both a tribute to their noble service and a valuable lesson for future generations.
Fussell is quick to point out that class in America is not decided exclusively upon finances; it is also a matter of taste, what one does with one's recreational time, what one reads, what colleges (if any) one has attended and how well one speaks.
Fussell's life began in Pasadena, California, a pastoral middle-class sanctuary almost untouched by the Great Depression. He went as an innocent to nearby Pomona College, where he learned about drink and women, and spent afternoons marching on the football field with the ROTC. And then, when the United States entered World War II, the spell was broken. At nineteen he joined the army and began the central event of his life. He endured basic training, became a second lieutenant in the infantry, and, leading his platoon into battle, was seriously wounded. When he recovered, he vowed never to take orders again. His newly subversive sensibility would color all his later years, as a Harvard Ph.D. student, as a professor of literature, and as one of America's most distinguished commentators on twentieth-century life.
"The first book of real magnitude to come out of the last war." --John Dos Passos John Horne Burns brought The Gallery back from World War II, and on publication in 1947 it became a critically-acclaimed bestseller. However, Burns's early death at the age of 36 led to the subsequent neglect of this searching book, which captures the shock the war dealt to the preconceptions and ideals of the victorious Americans. Set in occupied Naples in 1944, The Gallery takes its name from the Galleria Umberto, a bombed-out arcade where everybody in town comes together in pursuit of food, drink, sex, money, and oblivion. A daring and enduring novel--one of the first to look directly at gay life in the military--The Gallery poignantly conveys the mixed feelings of the men and women who fought the war that made America a superpower.
Fussell writes: This book is about the British experience on the Western Front from 1914 to 1918 and some of the literary means by which it has been remembered, conventionalized, and mythologized. It is also about the literary dimensions of the trench experience itself. Indeed, if the book had a subtitle, it would be something like "An Inquiry into the Curious Literariness of Real Life."
In dozens of selections that range from classic fiction and poetry to journalistic dispatches, this anthology presents the voices of this century's major conflicts: the First World War, the Spanish Civil War, the Second World War and the wars in Asia.
Editor Paul Fussell has brought together some of the best travel writing of all time from the world's most recognized travelers -- Marco Polo, Darwin and Kerouac to name a few -- and has explored the traveler's psyche from the Age of Discovery to the Age of Mass Tourism.
An anthology of essays on such varied topics as Hiroshima and the Indy 500. Fussell also explores the writings of notable author George Orwell.
Fussell admits to having a thing for uniforms. He focuses much of the book on the uniforms worn in earlier days, especially WWII, with attention to the proclivities of different nations, including Germany, Italy, and Japan.
In Wartime, Paul Fussell turns to the Second World War, the conflict in which he himself fought, to weave an intensely personal and wide-ranging narrative.
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