Cold War Literature
Writing the Global Conflict
Edited by Andrew Hammond
Published October 13th 2009 by Routledge – 272 pages
The Cold War was the longest conflict in a century defined by the scale and brutality of its conflicts. In the battle between the democratic West and the communist East there was barely a year in which the West was not organising, fighting or financing some foreign war. It was an engagement that resulted – in Korea, Guatemala, Nicaragua and elsewhere – in some twenty million dead. This collection of essays analyses the literary response to the coups, insurgencies and invasions that took place around the globe, and explores the various thematic and stylistic trends that Cold War hostilities engendered in world writing.
Drawing together scholars of various cultural backgrounds, the volume focuses upon such themes as representation, nationalism, political resistance, globalisation and ideological scepticism. Eschewing the typical focus in Cold War scholarship on Western authors and genres, there is an emphasis on the literary voices that emerged from what are often considered the ‘peripheral’ regions of Cold War geo-politics.
Ranging in focus from American postmodernism to Vietnamese poetry, from Cuban autobiography to Maoist theatre, and from African fiction to Soviet propaganda, this book will be of real interest to all those working in twentieth-century literary studies, cultural studies, history and politics.
1. The Yellow Peril in the Cold War: Fu Manchu and the Manchurian Candidate 2. The Cold War Representation of the West in Russian Literature 3. "Is It Chaos? Or Is It a Building Site?": British Theatrical Responses to the Cold War and Its Aftermath 4. Beyond the Apocalypse of Closure: Nuclear Anxiety in Postmodern Literature of the United States 5. The Reds and the Blacks: The Historical Novel in the Soviet Union and Postcolonial Africa 6. Marxist Literary Resistance to the Cold War 7. Poetry, Politics and War: Representations of the American War in Vietnamese Poetry’ 8. Remembering War and Revolution on the Maoist Stage 9. Revolution and Rejuvenation: Imagining Communist Cuba 10. An Anxious Triangulation: Cold War, Nationalism and Regional Resistance in East-Central European Literatures 11."Lifting Each Other off Our Knees": South African Women’s Poetry of Resistance, 1980-1989 12. Outwitting the Politburo: Politics and Poetry behind the Iron Curtain 13. The Anti-American: Graham Greene and the Cold War in the 1950s 14. The Excluded Middle: Intellectuals and the ‘Cold War’ in Latin America. Bibliography. Index
Andrew Hammond is a Senior Lecturer of English Literature at the Swansea Institute, University of Wales.