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Horrors of War
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
336 pp.
ebook EPUB
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The Undead on the Battlefield

Battlefields have traditionally been considered places where the spirits of the dead linger, and popular culture brings those thoughts to life. Supernatural tales of war told in print, on screen, and in other media depict angels, demons, and legions of the undead fighting against—or alongside—human soldiers. Ghostly war ships and phantom aircraft carry on their never-to-be-completed missions, and the spirits—sometimes corpses—of dead soldiers return to confront the enemies who killed them, comrades who betrayed them, or leaders who sacrificed them.In Horrors of War: The Undead on the Battlefield, Cynthia J. Miller and A. Bowdoin Van Riper have assembled essays that explore the meaning and significance of these tales. Among the questions that the volume seeks to answer are: How do supernatural stories engage with cultural attitudes toward war? In what ways do these stories reflect or challenge the popular memories of particular wars? How do they ask us to think again about battlefield heroism, military ethics, and the politics of sacrifice? Divided into four sections, chapters examine undead war stories in film (Carol for Another Christmas, The Devil’s Backbone), television (The Twilight Zone), literature (The Bloody Red Baron, Devils of D-Day), comics (Weird War Tales, The Haunted Tank), graphic novels (The War of the Trenches), and gaming (Call of Duty: World at War). Featuring contributions from a diverse group of international scholars, these essays address such themes as monstrous enemies and enemies made monstrous, legacies and memories of war, and the war dead who refuse to rest. Drawing together stories from across wars, branches of service, and generations of soldiers—and featuring more than fifty illustrations—Horrors of War will be of interest to scholars of film, popular culture, military history, and cultural history.

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