Vietnam and Other American Fantasies (Google eBook)

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Univ of Massachusetts Press, Sep 1, 2001 - History - 272 pages
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A provocative reassessment of the Vietnam War considers its cultural and political legacies, identifying misconceptions surrounding the conflict while calling for a more accurate awareness of factual events and the war's ongoing impact. Reprint.
  

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Vietnam and other American fantasies

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A former antiwar activist and author of M.I.A. or Mythmaking in America, Franklin (English and American studies, Rutgers) offers an all-inclusive cultural history of the Vietnam War and its continuing ... Read full review

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Farina's excellent volume is perhaps one of the most thorough analyses of the current state of the art of Landscape Ecology in a single volume. Himself a renowned professor and theoretician, Farina begins his book by guiding his reader through the history of Landscape Ecology, all the way from early geography to modern theories of biosemiotics and perceptual landscapes. While Farina himself is a European scientist at the University of Urbino in Italy, he appears to have a comprehensive understanding of both the European and the American perspectives. This understanding becomes apparent in Farina's ability to reconcile Europe's more pragmatic approach with America's more theoretical emphasis by identifying the common epistemological principles and integrating them into complete paradigms.
Farina's Eco-Field theory, also described in the text, uses the "Umwelt" concept known in semiotics to link individual species and organisms to the landscape. The text also describes traditional theories such as percolation, hierarchy and metapopulations. Each chapter concludes with a large list references for more information on any of the topics covered, and almost all the examples used are from real studies.
I would strongly recommend this book to anyone who is either beginning to explore Landscape Ecology or who wishes to improve his or her understanding of the field. Bear in mind that this book does not make for light reading, however. Many of the concepts and principles described are somewhat complex and, while Farina does a very good job of breaking them down into comprehensible ideas, the reader may have to expend a fair bit of effort on understanding some of the ideas. Occasional grammatical errors will occur, as well, as Farina chose to make this text accessible to the international community by writing it in English instead of his native Italian. These errors are generally very minor, however, and unavoidable, as English is complex enough to confuse even native speakers. Moreover, any effort made by the reader will be readily rewarded by the depth of insight and the richness of the content that this book provides.
 

Selected pages

Contents

on Differing Perceptions of Reality
1
From Realism to Virtual Reality IMAGES OF AMERICAS WARS
5
Plausibility of Denial
25
The Antiwar Movement We Are Supposed to Forget
47
Burning Illusions THE NAPALM CAMPAIGN
71
1968 or Bringing the War Home
89
The Vietnam War and the Culture Wars or the Perils of Western Civilization
111
Star Trek and Kicking the Vietnam Syndrome
131
The Vietnam War as American Science Fiction and Fantasy
151
Missing in Action in the Twentyfirst Century
173
NOTES
203
INDEX
235
Copyright

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Page 9 - When Hank does initiate this instantaneous push-button war, “in that explosion all our noble civilization-factories went up in the air and disappeared from the earth” (476). Beyond an electrified fence, the technowarriors have prepared a forty-foot-wide belt of land mines. The
Page 9 - by the logic of war, the common people are turned into automatons “dispersed to the places allotted them when not at the guns,” and the final image is of a sterile, lifeless, inorganic mass of “smooth white marble.”°

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About the author (2001)

About the Author
H. Bruce Franklin, author or editor of fifteen books on culture and history, is The John Cotton Dana Professor of English and American Studies at Rutgers University.

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