Tag: War

The Yurt of Fiction

This summer, George Saunders wrote that Donald Trump had given him a gift. Saunders had been traveling across the country, attending Trump rallies ...

The Afterlife of Agent Orange

“All wars are fought twice,” writes Viet Thanh Nguyen in Nothing Ever Dies, “the first time on the battlefield, the second time in memory.” Even decades after the first war ends, the second war can ...

Against Despair

Despair is everywhere, and for good reason. Huge numbers of refugees are fleeing warfare and violence, while unceasing terrorist attacks are feeding the right-wing populist surge all across Europe ...

Who Cares about American Power?

As the insane 2016 US presidential campaign enters its final weeks, we are with new urgency forced to question the role of American power in the world. In this charged moment, Noam Chomsky’s new book ...

Tales of the Interwar

Today, the once-provocative suggestion that we live in an age of interminable warfare has become a truism. The claim often takes the form of an observation about the post-9/11 syndrome that drives an ...

Stumbling Over a Violent Past

When Jennifer Teege was 38, she discovered a book in Hamburg’s central library that dramatically transformed her self-conception and her life: I Have to Love My Father, Don’t I? The book concerned ...

Comics versus Franquismo

In the late 1960s, dictator Francisco Franco slowly opened Spain to tourism while continuing to obliterate public memory of the retributions meted out after the Civil War (1936–9). I spent those ...

Orange Alert

In our post-9/11 era, the phrase “national security” has become all too familiar. A simple Google search yields over 361,000,000 results, ranging from the National Security Council homepage to op-eds ...

The Rubble of Beirut

Lebanese author Elias Khoury’s latest novel to be translated into English, Broken Mirrors, is about identity and memory, destruction and displacement, exile and its internal ruptures. The book opens ...

Life After Wartime

Fisher House looks like any other suburban American home: a well-manicured lawn; a kitchen stocked with Girl Scout cookies, Maseca, and ice cream; a living room with a flat-screen TV and children’s ...

The Woolf Girl

Pity the small back of Alan Kurdi, the drowned Syrian boy who washed up on a Turkish beach, child victim of the refugee crisis. His photo went viral, sparked outrage; perhaps it will win an award ...

Can Child Soldiers Be Saved?

Everybody loves stories about child soldiers, it seems, as long as redemption is involved. A memoir about Sierra Leone’s civil war, for example, is not exactly the feel-good stuff you’d expect to see ...

Streetwise in Weimar

Scholars of Weimar Germany have long wrestled with the fact that this period of unparalleled innovation in intellectual and cultural life was a time of economic and social crisis, brought to a close ...

The War in the Air

The staggered beginnings of Kate Atkinson’s remarkable new novel, A God in Ruins, take a lurching upward trajectory, moving from earth to sky. Its fleeting prelude offers a glimpse of a Royal Air ...

Tsuris, FREEDOM, and Guantanamo Bay

Wherever secrecy abrades democracy, tragicomedy builds up. It’s cultural nacre: a way of processing with less pain the absurdist bent in national security. This May, Congress used a chunk of its ...

The Stranger’s Voice

The Sympathizer, Viet Thanh Nguyen’s riveting debut novel, is a chronicle of war wrapped in a spy thriller and tucked inside a confession. It is also a political satire, a send-up of Hollywood, and a ...