Cover image for WWII : a chronicle of soldiering
Title:
WWII : a chronicle of soldiering
Author:
Jones, James, 1921-1977, author.
Publication Information:
Chicago ; London : University of Chicago Press, 2014.

©2014
Physical Description:
216 pages; 23 cm
General Note:
"Originally published in the United States in a slightly different form as part of an illustrated volume (Grosset & Dunlap, 1975) reprinted by Ballantine Books in 1976"--Title page verso.
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780226181127

9780226180939
Format :
Book

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D743 .J65 2014 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
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Summary

Summary

In 1975, James Jones--the American author whose novels From Here to Eternity and The Thin Red Line had made him the preeminent voice of the enlisted man in World War II--was chosen to write the text for an oversized coffee table book edited by former Yank magazine art director Art Weithas and featuring visual art from World War II. The book was a best seller, praised for both its images and for Jones's text, but in subsequent decades the artwork made it impossible for the book to be reproduced in its original form, and it fell out of print and was forgotten. This edition of WWII makes available for the first time in more than twenty years Jones's stunning text, his only extended nonfiction writing on the war that defined his generation.

Moving chronologically and thematically through the complex history of the conflict, Jones interweaves his own vivid memories of soldiering in the Pacific--from the look on a Japanese fighter pilot's face as he bombed Pearl Harbor, so close that Jones could see him smile and wave, to hitting the beach under fire in Guadalcanal--while always returning to resounding larger themes. Much of WWII can be read as a tribute to the commitment of American soldiers, but Jones also pulls no punches, bluntly chronicling resentment at the privilege of the officers, questionable strategic choices, wartime suffering, disorganization, the needless loss of life, and the brutal realization that a single soldier is ultimately nothing but a replaceable cog in a heartless machine. As the generation that fought and won World War II leaves the stage, James Jones's book reminds us of what they accomplished--and what they sacrificed to do so.


Summary

In 1975, James Jones--the American author whose novels From Here to Eternity and The Thin Red Line had made him the preeminent voice of the enlisted man in World War II--was chosen to write the text for an oversized coffee table book edited by former Yank magazine art director Art Weithas and featuring visual art from World War II. The book was a best seller, praised for both its images and for Jones's text, but in subsequent decades the artwork made it impossible for the book to be reproduced in its original form, and it fell out of print and was forgotten. This edition of WWII makes available for the first time in more than twenty years Jones's stunning text, his only extended nonfiction writing on the war that defined his generation.

Moving chronologically and thematically through the complex history of the conflict, Jones interweaves his own vivid memories of soldiering in the Pacific--from the look on a Japanese fighter pilot's face as he bombed Pearl Harbor, so close that Jones could see him smile and wave, to hitting the beach under fire in Guadalcanal--while always returning to resounding larger themes. Much of WWII can be read as a tribute to the commitment of American soldiers, but Jones also pulls no punches, bluntly chronicling resentment at the privilege of the officers, questionable strategic choices, wartime suffering, disorganization, the needless loss of life, and the brutal realization that a single soldier is ultimately nothing but a replaceable cog in a heartless machine. As the generation that fought and won World War II leaves the stage, James Jones's book reminds us of what they accomplished--and what they sacrificed to do so.


Author Notes

James Jones was born in Robinson, Illinois on November 6, 1921. He was unable to afford college, so he enlisted in the Army in 1939. His experiences during World War II inspired his best-known works: From Here to Eternity, which won the National Book Award in 1952, The Thin Red Line, and Whistle. His other works include The Pistol, Go to the Widow-Maker, The Ice-Cream Headache and Other Stories, and The Merry Month of May. Many of his books were adapted into movies including From Here to Eternity, Some Came Running, and The Thin Red Line. He died of congestive heart failure on May 9, 1977.

(Bowker Author Biography)


James Jones was born in Robinson, Illinois on November 6, 1921. He was unable to afford college, so he enlisted in the Army in 1939. His experiences during World War II inspired his best-known works: From Here to Eternity, which won the National Book Award in 1952, The Thin Red Line, and Whistle. His other works include The Pistol, Go to the Widow-Maker, The Ice-Cream Headache and Other Stories, and The Merry Month of May. Many of his books were adapted into movies including From Here to Eternity, Some Came Running, and The Thin Red Line. He died of congestive heart failure on May 9, 1977.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Table of Contents

Publisher's Notep. 9
Acknowledgmentsp. 11
I To Us Old Menp. 13
In the Beginningp. 14
Whistling Dixiep. 16
I Didn't Raise My Boyp. 18
The Coral Sea and Midwayp. 22
Waitingp. 29
While Waiting... a Look at Europep. 32
Guadalcanalp. 34
SoldierÆs Evolutionp. 38
First War Artp. 42
The Battle of Aucklandp. 45
North Africap. 48
Grand Strategyp. 51
Green and Obscenep. 54
Is History Written by the Upper Classes for the Upper Classes?p. 58
II Humorp. 63
The Art Programsp. 66
The Big Warp. 68
Casualtiesp. 72
The Forgotten Yearp. 78
Pacific Chessp. 80
Tarawa, Saipan, Peleliup. 84
Painting Itp. 88
Anonymityp. 91
Italyp. 94
More on Humor: Mauldinp. 96
Anziop. 99
Going Outp. 101
Overlordp. 104
Hospitalp. 108
The Home Frontp. 112
Love among the Rivetersp. 115
III D-Dayp. 119
Bloodbath at Omahap. 124
Consolidationp. 128
Air Warp. 131
Nose Artp. 139
Breakout-and the Long Haulp. 142
The Final Evolutionp. 148
The Bulgep. 152
Philippines: First Leyte, and Then Luzonp. 159
Twilight of Some Old Godsp. 169
IV The Last Milep. 177
The Last Yardp. 180
The Last Footp. 186
Mushroomp. 190
Bugbearp. 193
Surrender Nowp. 195
Responsibility, but for What?p. 200
An End to Itp. 201
Pass in Review!p. 205
Referencesp. 207
Indexp. 209