A POW's Memoir of the First World War: The Other Ordeal by Georges Connes, Lois Davis Vines, Marie-Claire Connes Wrage

By Georges Connes, Lois Davis Vines, Marie-Claire Connes Wrage

This lyrical memoir deals a clean glance contained in the trauma of struggle and captivity in the course of the First global struggle, with resonance for present day world.Georges Connes was once a tender literature graduate while he used to be drafted and served within the notorious and bloody conflict of Verdun. A survivor, he used to be captured through the Germans in June 1916 and have become a prisoner of conflict till his repatriation in January 1919. within the moment global struggle, he used to be lively within the French Resistance, was once arrested and detained, and finally went into hiding. After the conflict, he served because the period in-between mayor of Dijon prior to returning to his educational lifestyles as a professor of British and American literature.Connes stated his time as a POW as ''The different Ordeal', spotting that an important anguish persevered should you needed to suffer the 'firing, blood and dirt' of struggle. Connes makes a speciality of the human points of conflict, that are all too effortless to put out of your mind within the age of mass media. He passionately argues opposed to the important black and white view of 'us as opposed to them' to unearth the complexities of struggle. instead of demonizing his German captors, for instance, he describes person examples of gratuitous acts of kindness.Connes deals a pacifist, internationalist viewpoint on conflict. A survivor of 2 of the best conflicts in sleek historical past, Connes remained confident approximately humanity. This voice of desire presents perception not just into the 1st global conflict yet into the modern international.

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When we come back ‘home,’ naively, we are surprised and annoyed to see that not only our clothes (we were prepared for that) but also the famous bags containing our personal possessions have disappeared. They did promise, didn’t they, that we would find them, untouched, at the very place we had left them? Everyone’s memory is different. One person says one thing, someone else another. I believe we hadn’t paid much attention to what they said. I believe we were told that we would get them back with their contents, but without our captors saying where or when.

With the horses moving at a walk, it takes us five or six hours to get to Stenay. Their slow gait is a blessing; if they trotted, we would end up dismembered. I am no writer and have already used the meager stock of images and comparisons I had at my disposal to tr y to express our fatigue. Yesterday and last night on our straw mattresses we thought we were tired. We were in top form compared with how we feel today. Little Felix and I are sitting on the only seat, next to the driver, with whom we don’t exchange a single word.

The Douaumont Fort, located about one and a half miles from La Caillette, was in German hands by then. 3. The village of Souville is about one mile south of La Caillette. 4. Connes appears to have spent only five or ten minutes in Douaumont, which seemed to him to be a safe, if temporary shelter. He did not notice the traces of the explosion that three weeks earlier had killed 679 Germans. 5. This is an allusion to the battle of Jutland (May 31, 1916). The enormous battle took place off the coast of Denmark between the German High Seas Fleet and the British Grand Fleet.

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