Regeneration Free download » PDF DOC TXT or eBook

Free read Æ PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook ô Pat Barker

RegenerationHe strongest and most interesting novelists of her generation' Guardian 'Unforgettable' Sunday TelegraphCraiglockhart War Hospital Scotland 1917 and army psychiatrist William Rivers is treating shell shocked soldiers Under his care are the poets Siegfried Sassoon and Wilfred Owen as well as mute Billy Prior who is only able to communicate by means of pencil and paper Rivers's j. It has been than four years since I read this novel Thus I am now just contributing impressions and integrating some background on the historical characters brought to life in the book For a fresh and rich thematic response to the book I would I recommend highly the reviews by Steve Sckenda and James Henderson I appreciated the in depth character study of William Rivers the psychologist treating shell shock victims at Craiglockhart War Hospital His empathy for those broken men and the efforts he took to help them “regenerate” was remarkable The book included some on how his experience with field ethnology among the Melanesians made him sensitive to mythic and cultural themes in his patients’ disorders The key drama in the book concerned the moral dilemmas he faced due to success in his treatments leading to his patients being shipped back to the front Such was the case of two of his famous cases he treated that of poet soldiers Siegfried Sassoon and Wilfred Owen In the case of the former he was not in treatment for shell shock but under medical review after a protest statement he published in the newspaper while home on leave in 1917 Finished with the War A Soldier’s DeclarationI am making this statement as an act of willful defiance of military authority because I believe the war is being deliberately prolonged by those who have the power to end itI am a soldier convinced that I am acting on behalf of soldiers I believe that this war upon which I entered as a war of defense and liberation has now become a war of aggression and conuest I believe that the purposes for which I and my fellow soldiers entered upon this was should have been so clearly stated as to have made it impossible to change them and that had this been done the objects which actuated us would now be attainable by negotiation His friend Robert Graves had pulled strings of influence so he would get a medical review rather than a court martial Barker does well in bringing to life a portrait of Rivers friendship with Sassoon as well as the friendship Sassoon forged with Owen To some extent we get a believable vision of critical encouragement that Sassoon provided to Owen over his writing A reader’s dream of insight on their poetic vision is as to be expected unfulfilled The context of Sassoon’s case was brought out in Hochschild’s book To End All Wars Loyalty and Rebellion Anti war activists Bertrand Russell helped him draft his statement and Sylvia Pankhurst published it in her newsletter Sassoon’s expectation was that a public court marshal would give him a platform for his message while Russell and Pankhurst hoped that would trigger a movement of soldiers to follow the Bolshevik’s lead of laying down their weapons Instead the War Office a public statement proclaimed “Sassoon has been reported by the medical board as not being responsible for his action as he was suffering from a nervous breakdown” Eventually Sassoon chose to return to fighting at the front noting in his diary that “I am only here to look after some men” Hochschild summarizes “It was a haunting reminder of the fierce power of group loyalty over that of political conviction—and all the so because it came from someone who had not in the slightest changed nor ever in his life would change his belief that his country’s supposed war aims were fraudulent”The fate of Owen is too tragic for words Hochschild summarizes At only 25 Wilfred Owen had never published a book but had his notebooks the finest body of poetry about the experience of war written in the twentieth century At noon on November 11 an hour into the celebration of the peace accord Owen’s mother received the black bordered War Office telegram telling her that a week earlier her son had been killed in actionThe background story of WHR Rivers is outlined in a great article in Wikipedia He was uite innovative in his approaches for treating what is now called PTSD Barker captures how he used the “talking cure”to encourage his patients to relive and react to their experiences Yet he was no Freudian Instead of seeing shell shock as relating to psychic neuroses and repressed sexual urges he saw their trouble as simply related to the fear and trauma of their war experiencesA uote from a professional source on his accomplishments has it that Rivers by pursuing a course of humane treatment had established two principles that would be embraced by American military psychiatrists in the next war He had demonstrated first that men of unuestioned bravery could succumb to overwhelming fear and second that the most effective motivation to overcome that fear was something stronger than patriotism abstract principles or hatred of the enemy It was the love of soldiers for one another The article suggests that even though both Rivers and Sassoon were gay the propriety at the time makes it plausible that the subject would come up little in their sessions which in fact is how Barker portrayed the issue in the book The likelihood that Sassoon might have loved Rivers is also covered in the Wikipedia article Barker only goes so far as to impute the basic transference effect of Rivers being seen as a father figure He must have been a great therapist A friend and colleague summarized the strengths in his character Rivers was intolerant and sympathetic He was once compared to Moses laying down the law The comparison was an apt one and one side of the truth The other side of him was his sympathy It was a sort of power of getting into another man's life and treating it as if it were his own And yet all the time he made you feel that your life was your own to guide and above everything that you could if you cared make something important out of itIt turns out that the fictional Billy Prior is of a main character in each of the three books than Sassoon He is a complex violent and manipulative character who also had a playful and humane side Here in “Regeneration” we get a rendering of Rivers working with him revealing a lot about issues of class in the war ‘I suppose most of them turn you into Daddy don’t they Well I’m a bit too old to be sitting on Daddy’s knee’‘Kicking him on the shins every time you meet him isn’t generally considered mature’‘I see A negative transference Is that what you think we’ve got’‘I hope not’ Rivers couldn’t altogether conceal his surprise ‘Where did you learn that term’‘I can read’‘You have to win don’t you’Prior stared intently at him ‘You know you do a wonderful imitation of a stuffed shirt And you’re not like that at all really are you’‘How did you fit in’Prior’s face shut tight ‘You mean did I encounter any snobbery’‘Yes’‘Not than I have here’Their eyes locked Rivers said ‘But you did encounter it’‘Yes It’s made perfectly clear when you arrive that some people are welcome than others It helps if you have been to the right school It helps if you hunt it helps if your shirts are the right colour Which is a deep shade of khaki by the way’’Do you know for the first time I realized that somewhere in the back of their tiny tiny minds they really do believe the whole thing’s going to end in one big glorious cavalry charge “Stormed at with shot and shellBoldly they rode and wellInto the jaws of death Into the mouth of hell ” And all That Rubbish’Rivers noticed that Prior’s face lit up as he uoted the poem ‘Is it rubbish’‘Yes Oh all right I was in love with it once Shall I tell you something about that charge Just as it was about to start an officer saw three men smoking He thought that was a bit too casual so he confiscated their sabres and sent them into the charge unarmed Two of them were killed The one who survived was flogged the next day ’ Thus you can see the book’s content does not draw the reader directly into the drama and horrors of the war It is a subtle indirect take on the impact of war It explores well the struggle of individuals messed up over the experiences to recover and the unpleasant reality of the medical professionals tasked with facilitating their transition back into harm’s way Our twisted conceptions of courage and masculinity are elucidated with sensitivity WHR Rivers Lt Siegfried Sassoon Craiglockhart War Hospital in Derby UK

Pat Barker ô 0 Read

The modern classic of contemporary war fiction from Women's Prize shortlisted author of The Silence of the GirlsRecommended by Richard Osman Regeneration is the first novel in Pat Barker's Booker Prize winning Regeneration trilogy a powerfully moving portrait of the deep legacy of human trauma in the First World War'Brilliant intense and subtle' Peter Kemp Sunday Times'One of t. The first volume in Pat Barker’s First World War trilogy; and what an excellent start and a brilliant weaving of fact and fiction I already knew about Craiglockhart and the hospital for those with “shellshock” and breakdown with the pioneering psychologist Rivers Siegfried Sassoon’s stay there is well documented in Max Egremont’s excellent biography He is a central part of this novel and his interactions with Rivers and Wilfred Owen whom he encouraged to write poetry Robert Graves also pops up; he tried to shield Sassoon from the results of his declaration Sassoon was highly decorated he had a Military cross but he was disillusioned with the war and sent a declaration to The Times;“I am making this statement as an act of wilful defiance of military authority because I believe that the war is being deliberately prolonged by those who have the power to end it I am a soldier convinced that I am acting on behalf of soldiers I believe that the war upon which I entered as a war of defence and liberation has now become a war of aggression and conuest I believe that the purposes for which I and my fellow soldiers entered upon this war should have been so clearly stated as to have made it impossible to change them and that had this been done the objects which actuated us would now be attainable by negotiationI have seen and endured the sufferings of the troops and I can no longer be a party to prolong these sufferings for ends which I believe to be evil and unjust I am not protesting against the conduct of the war but against the political errors and insincerities for which the fighting men are being sacrificedOn behalf of those who are suffering now I make this protest against the deception which is being practised upon them; also I believe it may help to destroy the callous complacency with which the majority of those at home regard the continuance of agonies which they do not share and which they have not enough imagination to realize”It is worth uoting in full and Barker starts the book with it Sassoon’s friend Graves realized that Sassoon was heading for a court martial and applied to the medical board Sassoon had been wounded to persuade them that Sassoon was suffering from shellshock Barker tells Sassoon’s story; his homosexuality is hinted at and his talks with Rivers are well imagined Owen and Graves are minor characters but add a great deal to the novel As do the fictional characters who are brilliantly drawn especially PriorBarker makes some interesting points about what we now call PTSD Women had long been pigeonholed as being prone to “hysteria” in its many forms and the men who suffered from the same type of ailment were handled very differently and uietly The First World War with its horrors and sheer brutality produced men suffering from PTSD and it was the sheer numbers that meant the issue could not be ignored Barker contrasts the humane and modern approach favoured by Rivers with other brutal approaches Barker presents many of the ideas in flux at the time and what is most prescient is the very modernity and relevance to the present conflicts we have been contending with in our generationThere is a myth that the Great War changed everything and people woke up to the nature of war; we know it isn’t so unfortunately Barker manages to make it uite difficult to disentangle the strands of fact and fiction she sets up; but she does a very good job of conveying the horrors of war in a subtle way; this is not boring history or historical fiction; it is a mirror for humanity to look into and see the obscenity of war

Read Regeneration

Regeneration Free download » PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook ò The modern classic of contemporary war fiction from Women's Prize shortlisted author of The Silence of the GirlsRecommended by Richard Osman Regeneration is the first novel in Pat Barker's Booker Prize winning Regeneration trilogy a powerfully moving portrait of the deep legacOb is to make the men in his charge healthy enough to fight Yet the closer he gets to mending his patients' minds the harder becomes every decision to send them back to the horrors of the front Pat Barker's Regeneration is the classic exploration of how the traumas of war brutalised a generation of young menThe Regeneration trilogy Regeneration The Eye in the DoorThe Ghost Road. My experience with this World War I trilogy is bumpy to say the leastStarting by reading The Ghost Road without knowing it was the last in the series I was not impressed I have difficulties with historical fiction which mixes fictional characters with historical persons in a speculative interpretation of history But considering the unfairness of judging a series after reading only the conclusion I now embarked on the first one Thus I find myself doing what Carol Ann Duffy did with the most famous Wilfred Owen poem spinning history backwardsThe Last Post by Carol Ann DuffyIn all my dreams before my helpless sightHe plunges at me guttering choking droningIf poetry could tell it backwards true beginthat moment shrapnel scythed you to the stinking mudbut you get up amazed watch bled bad bloodrun upwards from the slime into its wounds;see lines and lines of British boys rewindback to their trenches kiss the photographs from home mothers sweethearts sisters younger brothersnot entering the story nowto die and die and dieDulce No Decorum No Pro patria moriYou walk awayYou walk away; drop your gun fixed bayonetlike all your mates do too Harry Tommy Wilfred Bert and light a cigaretteThere's coffee in the suarewarm French breadand all those thousands deadare shaking dried mud from their hairand ueuing up for home Freshly alivea lad plays Tipperary to the crowd releasedfrom History; the glistening healthy horses fit for heroes kingsYou lean against a wallyour several million lives still possibleand crammed with love work children talent English beer good foodYou see the poet tuck away his pocket book and smileIf poetry could truly write it backwardsthen it wouldThe problem is that it is not possible really History can't be unwritten or rewritten And my issue with the third Booker winning part of the series is accentuated and deepened by reading the first volume I don't like this kind of historical fiction and my dislike grows deeper with every novel I try I prefer reading the authors who experienced the time themselves thus giving authentic testimony OR historians who keep to objective documentation analysing the primary and secondary sources in their complexity and completeness rather than through the lens of a biased fictional character mingling with historical persons A mix of those two approaches is not for meSo that leaves the uestion open should I skip the middle Having started with the end then reluctantly moved backwards to the start is it worthwhile to work my way through the action of the second in order to close the circleOr should I leave it wide open and read Sassoon firsthand instead The Poems Of Wilfred Owen in the forwards direction that is I know almost by heartBent double like old beggars under sacks Knock kneed coughing like hags we cursed through sludge Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs And towards our distant rest began to trudge Men marched asleep Many had lost their boots But limped on blood shod All went lame; all blind; Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots Of gas shells dropping softly behind Gas GAS uick boys—An ecstasy of fumbling Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time But someone still was yelling out and stumbling And flound’ring like a man in fire or lime—Dim through the misty panes and thick green light As under a green sea I saw him drowning In all my dreams before my helpless sight He plunges at me guttering choking drowning If in some smothering dreams you too could pace Behind the wagon that we flung him in And watch the white eyes writhing in his face His hanging face like a devil’s sick of sin; If you could hear at every jolt the blood Come gargling from the froth corrupted lungs Obscene as cancer bitter as the cud Of vile incurable sores on innocent tongues— My friend you would not tell with such high zest To children ardent for some desperate glory The old Lie Dulce et decorum est Pro patria mori