The Unwomanly Face of War: An Oral History of Women in World War II

The Unwomanly Face of War: An Oral History of Women in World War II


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780399588747
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 04/03/2018
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 76,773
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.90(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Svetlana Alexievich was born in Ivano-Frankivsk, Ukraine, in 1948 and has spent most of her life in the Soviet Union and present-day Belarus, with prolonged periods of exile in Western Europe. Starting out as a journalist, she developed her own nonfiction genre, which gathers a chorus of voices to describe a specific historical moment. Her works include The Unwomanly Face of War (1985), Last Witnesses (1985), Zinky Boys (1990), Voices from Chernobyl (1997), and Secondhand Time (2013). She has won many international awards, including the 2015 Nobel Prize in Literature “for her polyphonic writings, a monument to suffering and courage in our time.”

Read an Excerpt

“I Don’t Want to Remember . . .”

Excerpted from "The Unwomanly Face of War"
by .
Copyright © 2018 Svetlana Alexievich.
Excerpted by permission of Random House Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

From a Conversation with a Historian xi

A Human Being is Greater Than War xiii

"I Don't Want to Remember …" 3

"Grow Up. Girls … You're Still Green …" 19

Of Oaths and Prayers 20

Of the Smell of Fear and a Suitcase of Candy 34

Of Everyday Life and Essential Life 54

"I Alone Came Back to Mama …" 71

"Two Wars Live in Our House …" 91

"Telephones Don't Shoot …" 99

"They Awarded Us Little Medals …" 113

Of Dolls and Rifles 117

Of Death and Astonishment in the Face of Death 122

Of Horses and Birds 126

"It Wasn't Me …" 131

"I Remember Those Eyes Even Now …" 141

"We Didn't Shoot …" 159

Of Nice Little Shoes and a Cursed "Wooden Leg 160

Of the Special "K" Soap and the Guardhouse 168

Of Melted Bearings and Russian Curses 176

"They Needed Soldiers … But We Also Wanted To Be Beautiful …" 185

Of Men's Boots and Women's Hats 186

Of a Girlish Treble and Sailors' Superstitions 197

Of the Silence of Horror and the Beauty of Fiction 207

"Young Ladies! Do You Know: The Commander of a Sapper Platoon Lives Only Two Months …" 211

"To See Him Just Once …" 225

Of a Damned Wench and the Roses of May 226

Of a Strange Silence Facing the Sky and a Lost Ring 239

Of the Loneliness of a Bullet and a Human Being 247

"About Tiny Potatoes …" 251

Of a Mine and a Stuffed Toy in a Basket 253

Of Mommies and Daddies 265

Of Little Life and a Big Idea 271

"Mama. What's a Papa?" 281

Of Bathing Babies and of a Mama Who Looks Like a Papa 281

Of Little Red Fading Hood and the Joy of Meeting a Cat During the War 290

Of the Silence of Those Who Could Now Speak 298

"And She Puts Her Hand to Her Heart …" 303

Of the Last Days of the War, When Killing Was Repugnant 303

Of a Composition with Childish Mistakes and Comic Movies 312

Of the Motherland, Stalin, and Red Cloth 317

"Suddenly We Wanted Desperately To Live …" 323

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The Unwomanly Face of War: An Oral History of Women in World War II 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is an incredibly moving and at the same time horrific recount of what it meant - to be a Soviet woman soldier. Once you've read it - you'll never forget it.