The Great War And Modern Memory

992 WordsApr 18, 20164 Pages
Similarly, Fussell is neutral throughout his book, which enables him to be cohesive and direct with his points and illustrations. In his introduction, he states that his book is about “the British experience on the Western Front…and some of the literary means by which it has been remembered, conventionalized, and mythologized” (ix). He quickly makes a disclaimer that his readers will find themselves reading mostly about British literature and the trench life of both British and France. While reading through The Great War and Modern Memory, it can be noted that Fussell generally leaves his opinions out from the narrative. His focus is to find the way “the dynamics and iconography of the Great War have proved crucial political, rhetorical, and artistic determinants on subsequent life” (ix). He does that by gathering his resources, studying them, and presenting them as they are. He wants history and the works of writers from the past to speak for themselves. Writing in such a way allows him to develop his point, on how literary elements that developed the minds of those living in the twentieth century, effectively and concisely. Perhaps this is why he states that if he were to subtitle his novel, it would be called “An Inquiry into the Curious Literariness of Real Life” (ix). He wants all of the examined “literary traditions [writings of soldiers] and real life to transect” so that he won’t have to twist any ideas provided by those who experienced the war. He wants to analyze
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