Siegfried Sassoon, Hopelessness and Iraq

Critical Dispatches

Sassoon

Snooping around the charity shops of West London a week past, I spied a copy of Siegfried Sassoon’s fictionalized autobiography, Memoirs of an Infantry Officer, on sale for £1. The discovery of a such a volume came as a revelation as although I had been aware of and enjoyed Sassoon’s poetic work (along with Wilfred Owen, he is my hero as far as political poetry is concerned) since I was a preteen– as I am sure anyone born in the North West of England is bred into – I had no idea that he also published prose. At a quid, I would have been the worst sort of miser not to pick it up.

The scale of the whole thing – the de-humaning conditions, the destruction of human life, the sheer hopelessness of it all – is nothing less than horrifying. I remember reading in Savage Continent, Keith Lowe’s brilliant…

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2 thoughts on “Siegfried Sassoon, Hopelessness and Iraq

  1. Worth reading the whole (short) article, to get a comparison with national ambitions during WW1 and those in modern conflict in the same area today. Sassoon realised that the reasons for, and origins of the war were more complex than simply fighting German aggression in Europe.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

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