The Penguin Book of New Zealand War Writing

Author(s): Harry Ricketts and Gavin McLean (eds)

NZ Non Fiction

'The editors ...have cast their nets widely indeed. They have produced a volume that no-one with an interest in wars in which this country has become ensnared should miss reading. The book is a vast treasure trove of material'. - Otago Daily Times Warfare, both at home and abroad, has shaped the way New Zealand defines itself: through camaraderie and courage, patriotism and politics, identity and nationhood. Soldiers writing from the front, journalists on the ground, biographers examining the lives of key figures, poets, novelists and playwrights reflecting on the experience of combat - these have all helped to form the way we think about war and so the way we think about ourselves. The Penguin Book of New Zealand War Writing presents a rich interplay of writing about our country's many military engagements. It features creative responses to conflict, such as a waiata written about an inter-tribal skirmish, short stories on the World Wars, extracts from plays and novels set in such campaigns as Chunuk Bair and Vietnam, and works by various poets, including James K. Baxter, Eileen Duggan, Denis Glover, Allen Curnow and Robert Sullivan. There are vivid accounts by journalists reporting home as well as by soldiers recalling their experiences in the trenches, the desert or in the air. Rounding out this fascinating collection are thoughtful retrospective commentaries on the impact of wars from precolonial times up to Afghanistan. 'This handsome and comprehensive compilation certainly reinforces co-editor Harry Ricketts's opening observation that a case could be made for seeing war as New Zealand's most popular social activity...It is a rich tapestry of experience and reflection which weaves a complex picture that evokes a similarly complex response from the reader because there is much here that is unfamiliar, as well as the well known.' - Sunday Star Times 'Sensibly, the anthology runs chronologically, not according to when things were written but according to which wars and conflicts the writing references. Contemporary reports rub shoulders with much later fictional or historical accounts of the same events...Some of the selections are familiar acquaintances - they are the type of thing that could not decently be left out of an anthology like this...If there are many things that are familiar here, there are also more obscure things that the anthologists have done well to resurrect . ..The best feature of the anthology's arrangement is the way it lets us compare different versions of the same events, by looking at passages that sit side by side...this is a capacious and worthwhile anthology ...The Penguin Book of New Zealand War Writing delivers the promised goods.' - Nicholas Reid,


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General Fields

  • : 9780143573098
  • : Penguin Books
  • : Penguin Books
  • : 1.35
  • : September 2015
  • : 243mm X 162mm X 45mm
  • : New Zealand
  • : September 2015
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Harry Ricketts and Gavin McLean (eds)
  • : Hardback
  • : en
  • : near fine
  • : 528