Prisoners of the Japanese: Literary Imagination and the Prisoner-of-war Experience

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Univ. of Queensland Press, 2006 - History - 208 pages
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While there have been many memoirs and diaries of former prisoners of war held by the Japanese during World War II, this is the first book to analyze the major works of fiction regarding the prisoner-of-war experience. Covering such seminal works as Pierre Boulle’s The Bridge on the River Kwai, Nevil Shute’s A Town Like Alice, J. G. Ballard’s Empire of the Sun, and John Doyle’s Australian television drama Changi, the study also draws on the writings of Daniel Defoe and the Jewish-Italian Holocaust survivor Primo Levi. Striving for an international focus, the book examines literature from the United States, United Kingdom, Japan, Australia, and the Netherlands.
  

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Contents

Prisoners of the Japanese
1
A Town Like Alice and the prisoner of war as Christfigure
30
Ian Watt and the myth of The Bridge on the River Kwai
66
King Rat Empire of the Sun and the art of survival
89
Australian prisonerofwar fiction
125
Conclusion
152
Bibliography
166
Endnotes
179
Index
203
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About the author (2006)

Roger Bourke is a journalist, media consultant, and academic editor.

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