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Touch the Face of War
In late May, we noted Phil Klay ‘05’s fine essay in the Wall Street Journal — Treat Veterans With Respect, Not Pity. Klay has now published a set of stories about Iraq entitled Redeployment, and David Brooks ‘15 has written two pieces about Klay’s work for Business Insider: a review, This New Book Reveals That War Is Much More Than Combat; and an introduction to the initial chapter of Klay’s book, The First Chapter Of This Book Will Change Your Understanding Of Soldiers In Combat.
In his own review, the New York Times’ Dexter Filkins lauded Klay’s book: “Redeployment is hilarious, biting, whipsawing and sad. The best thing written so far on what the war did to people’s souls.” George Packer wrote even more fulsomely in The New Yorker:
“Redeployment” is military for “return,” and Klay’s fiction peels back every pretty falsehood and self-delusion in the encounter between veterans and the people for whom they supposedly fought…
Klay, a Dartmouth grad who served in the Marine Corps in Anbar Province during the violent months of the surge, in 2007, is a writer who happened to be a marine—you can imagine him writing well about anything, not just Iraq. His fiction is extremely funny and absolutely serious, his control over language and character so assured that the array of first-person narrators in these dozen stories—combat grunts, a desk-bound officer, a beleaguered State Department official, a Marine chaplain—are all distinct and persuasive.
High praise, indeed, for Klay and the College.
Addendum: Both Klay and Brooks are veterans, a group that is today more broadly represented in the undergraduate student body than at any time since the end of the war in Vietnam — an example of real diversity and a good thing for any number of reasons.
August 14, 2013
Breaking: Of Crips and Bloods and Memories of Ghetto Parties
History repeats itself, first as tragedy and then as farce, or sometimes it just repeats itself. From the New York Times on November 30, 1998: At Dartmouth College, white students at a ”ghetto party” dressed…
June 25, 2013
Dean of the College Charlotte Johnson’s War on Students Part (2/2)
Part 1, Part 2 Today’s post again recounts the events that befell the Freshman. However, the content of the Hanover Police department report reproduced in this space yesterday is supplemented by information from my own…
October 18, 2009
When Love Beckoned in 52nd Street
We were at San Francisco’s BIX last evening, enjoying prosecco, cheese, and a bit of music. A full year of inhabitation in Northern California has unraveled to me no decent venue for proper lounging, but…
October 9, 2009
D Afraid of a Little Competish
So our colleague and Dartblog writer Joe Asch informed me that the D has rejected our cunning advertising campaign. Uh-oh. The Dartmouth is widely known as a breeding ground for instant New York Times successes,…
September 4, 2009
How Regents Should Reign
As Dartmouth alumni proceed through the legal hoops necessary to defuse a Board-packing plan—which put in unhappy desuetude an historic 1891 Agreement between alumni and the College guaranteeing a half-democratically-elected Board of Trustees—it strikes one…
August 29, 2009
Election Reform Study Committee
If you are an alum of the College on the Hill, you may have received a number of e-mails of late beseeching your input for a new arm of the College’s Alumni Control Apparatus called…