To The Kwai - and Back: War Drawings 1939-1945

Overview

In 1939, as an art student, Ronald Searle volunteered for the army, embarking for Singapore in 1941. Within a month of his arrival there, however, he became a prisoner of the Japanese, and after 14 months in a prisoner-of-war camp, was sent north to a work camp on the Burma Railway. In May 1944, he was sent to the notorious Changi Gaol in Singapore and became one of the few British soldiers to survive imprisonment there. Throughout his captivity, despite the risk, Ronald Searle made drawings to record his ...

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Overview

In 1939, as an art student, Ronald Searle volunteered for the army, embarking for Singapore in 1941. Within a month of his arrival there, however, he became a prisoner of the Japanese, and after 14 months in a prisoner-of-war camp, was sent north to a work camp on the Burma Railway. In May 1944, he was sent to the notorious Changi Gaol in Singapore and became one of the few British soldiers to survive imprisonment there. Throughout his captivity, despite the risk, Ronald Searle made drawings to record his experiences. The drawings in this remarkable book were hidden by Searle and smuggled from place to place, stained with the sweat and dirt of his captivity. They are a record of one man’s war and are among the most important and moving accounts of the second World War.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This is a monumentally important book . . . more than just a drawn record of mainly unphotographed events. It is also a hugely moving indictment of man's inhumanity to man that not even Goya's The Disasters of War can surpass . . . This book should never be out of print."  —Peter Brookes, The Times

"With determination and courage he managed to keep a record in drawings of his years of suffering as a prisoner in Singapore and on the Burma-Siam Railway . . . Harrowing and moving . . . His drawings are a vivid testimony of the truth and of the suffering of so many."  —Sir Hugh Cortazzi, Japan Book Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780285637450
  • Publisher: Souvenir Press
  • Publication date: 4/28/2006
  • Pages: 208
  • Product dimensions: 11.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.52 (d)

Meet the Author

Ronald Searle is the most acclaimed satirical graphic artist of the 20th century. He delighted millions with his creation of St Trinians and is a leading contributor to Le Monde and Life magazine, and is the author of numerous books including Illustrated Winespeak, Ronald Searle’s Non-Sexist Dictionary, Searle’s Cats,
Slightly Foxed, and Something in the Cellar.

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Table of Contents


A Word from the Artist     7
Soldiering 1939-1941     13
The Journey to the East: October 1941 to January 1942     21
Cape Town     30
Mombasa     38
Chagos Islands     44
The Lost Battle: 13 January to 15 February 1942     49
Pow No. 1/5594 Changi Camp     71
The Selarang 'Incident'     90
Siam 1943     95
The Journey Up     98
The Jungle Camps     106
Changi Gaol 1944     131
The Last Year 1945     161
Catalogue reference numbers     190
Bibliography     191
Acknowledgements     192
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