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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 in War, Trauma in Life

Trauma in War, Trauma in Life

The Pose of the “Heroic” Battlefield Correspondent

(p.114) 3 Trauma in War, Trauma in Life
Chronicling Trauma

Doug Underwood

University of Illinois Press

This chapter examines the traumatic history of journalist–literary figures as military correspondents and observers of and participants in war, including the part they have played in developing the “code” of courageous conduct that has come to shape the “heroic” ideal of the journalist operating under dangerous conditions. The discussion begins by looking at journalists and novelists who have incorporated trauma into their awareness and their willingness to be candid about war's impact on the psyche, including Ambrose Bierce, Tobias Smollett, Walt Whitman, Kurt Vonnegut, John Hersey, and Vera Brittain. The chapter then considers the expression of the hero's code in the fiction of Stephen Crane, Rudyard Kipling, Ernest Hemingway, and other journalist–literary figures. It also explores the satire and ambivalence in attitudes about war and peace among the journalist–literary figures who have experienced military conflict firsthand.

Keywords:   trauma, journalists, military correspondents, war, courageous conduct, novelists, Ambrose Bierce, heroic journalism, satire, peace

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