The Crash of Ruin: American Combat Soldiers in Europe during World War II by Peter Schrijvers, Mary Beth Norton, Toby L. Ditz | | 9780814798072 | Paperback | Barnes & Noble
The Crash of Ruin: American Combat Soldiers in Europe during World War II

The Crash of Ruin: American Combat Soldiers in Europe during World War II

by Peter Schrijvers, Mary Beth Norton, Toby L. Ditz
     
 

ISBN-10: 0814798071

ISBN-13: 9780814798072

Pub. Date: 02/01/2001

Publisher: New York University Press

"One of the most remarkable books I have ever come across. A significant and fascinating contribution to the field. The Crash of Ruin should appeal to a large audience of readers interested in World War II history."
-Edward M. Coffman, Author of The War to End All Wars: The American Military Experience in World War I
"The Crash of Ruin offers the

Overview

"One of the most remarkable books I have ever come across. A significant and fascinating contribution to the field. The Crash of Ruin should appeal to a large audience of readers interested in World War II history."
-Edward M. Coffman, Author of The War to End All Wars: The American Military Experience in World War I
"The Crash of Ruin offers the reader both intellectual and emotional rewards. . . . Its narrative power makes it a wonderful read."
-Susan M. Hartmann, The Ohio State University
"A brilliant contribution to intercultural studies. It imaginatively combines the 'new' military history with an older American Studies research and writing technique. Not only will the book attract a wide range of readers, it should also stimulate scholars to adopt this approach to many other topics in cultural studies."
-William R. Childs, Author of Trucking and the Public Interest
In the ruined Europe of World War II, American soldiers on the front lines had no eye for breathtaking vistas or romantic settings. The brutality of battle profoundly darkened their perceptions of the Old World. As the only means of international travel for the masses, the military exposed millions of Americans to a Europe in swift, catastrophic decline.
Drawing on soldiers' diaries, letters, poems, and songs, Peter Schrijvers offers a compelling account of the experiences of U.S. combat ground forces: their struggles with the European terrain and seasons, their confrontations with soldiers, and their often startling encounters with civilians. Schrijvers relays how the GIs became so desensitized and dehumanized that the sight of dead animals often evoked more compassion than the sight of enemy dead.
The Crash of Ruin concludes with a dramatic and moving account of the final Allied offensive into German-held territory and the soldiers' bearing witness to the ultimate symbol of Europe's descent into ruin-the death camps of the Holocaust.
The harrowing experiences of the GIs convinced them that Europe's collapse was not only the result of the war, but also the Old World's deep-seated political cynicism, economic stagnation, and cultural decadence. The soldiers came to believe that the plague of war formed an inseparable part of the Old World's decline and fall.

Author Biography: Currently Lecturer in the History of U.S. Foreign Relations at the Graduate Institute of International Studies in Geneva, Switzerland, Peter Schrijvers received his Ph.D. in U.S. diplomatic and military history from The Ohio State University.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780814798072
Publisher:
New York University Press
Publication date:
02/01/2001
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
352
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.80(d)

Table of Contents

Dedication - Abbreviations - Preface - Acknowledgements - PART 1: NATURE - Earth - Vegetation - Light and Darkness - The Seasons - Notes - PART 2: THE SOLDIERS - The Allies - The Enemies - PART 3: THE CIVILIANS - The Labyrinth of Nations - The Limits of Communication - The Totality of War - The Old World - PART 4: THE APOCALYPSE - The Strange - The Genocide - The Horsemen of the Apocalypse - Notes - Epilogue - Bibliography - Index

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