Reading the Wind: The Literature of the Vietnam War

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Reading the Wind: The Literature of the Vietnam War

By Timothy J. Lomperis
Duke University Press, 2987
174 pp.

In May 1985 approximately 70 writers, publishers, editors and teachers-most of them Vietnam veterans of one sort or another-assembled at The Asia Society in New York to ask how American literature on the war has affected American perceptions of Vietnam, as well as policy. The participants' highly charged but rather inconclusive debates about the war echo our society's ongoing struggle with its meaning, but their discussions of some of the artistic issues raised are more successful. Lomperis, a professor of political science at Duke, provides a lively report of the gathering. John Clark Pratt, an English professor at Colorado State, contributes a very useful bibliographical overview of the literature, from Graham Greene's The Quiet American to Joe Klein's Payback: Five Marines After Vietnam.

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