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Chronicling TraumaJournalists and Writers on Violence and Loss$
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Doug Underwood

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780252036408

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252036408.001.0001

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Trauma, News, and Narrative

Trauma, News, and Narrative

The Study of Violence and Loss in Journalism and Fiction

Chapter:
(p.1) Introduction Trauma, News, and Narrative
Source:
Chronicling Trauma
Author(s):

Doug Underwood

Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
DOI:10.5406/illinois/9780252036408.003.0001

This book investigates the impact of trauma and coverage of violence on journalists, the subjects of their coverage, and their audience—including the possibility that journalists who have suffered early life stress (such as unhappy childhoods and distorted family relationships) may gravitate toward high-risk assignments, such as war reporting. It examines the sources and the consequences of traumatic experience in the lives of 150 journalist–literary figures in American and British history dating from the early 1700s to today—from Daniel Defoe and Jonathan Swift to Charles Dickens and Ernest Hemingway—and the traumatic events in their lives that can be viewed as contributing to their emotional struggles, the vicissitudes of their journalism careers, and their development as artists. It considers the ways that their experiences in journalism may have contributed to these writers' psychological stress and played a role in their mental health history. The book demonstrates how the intersection of journalism and fiction writing offers important insights about trauma's role in literary expression.

Keywords:   trauma, violence, journalists, literary figures, Ernest Hemingway, journalism, psychological stress, mental health, fiction, traumatic experience

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