"I speak with the voice of things to come": reading "The Vietnam project" today

Masterson, John (2013) "I speak with the voice of things to come": reading "The Vietnam project" today. Journal of Literary Studies, 29 (2). pp. 62-81. ISSN 0256-4718

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In this article I argue that a rereading of “The Vietnam Project” allows us to explore the varied functions of what has been dubbed “war-porn” in relation to global image consumption then (with respect to Vietnam) and now (with respect to Iraq and Afghanistan). From renewed interest in depictions of torture in Waiting for the Barbarians to acknowledging swipes at the Bush and Blair administrations in Diary of a Bad Year, recent Coetzee scholarship has been enlivened by debates clustered around the most recent wounding of the American body politic: 9/11. By analysing an earlier piece, which is preoccupied with a conflict for which the wound emerged as the defining trope, I consider the prophetic power of “The Vietnam Project”. I argue that it makes for compelling reading owing to issues such as wounding, trauma, war, its mediatisation, and the associated discourses that continue to haunt the American popular and political imagination.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of English > English
Subjects: P Language and Literature
Depositing User: Laura Vellacott
Date Deposited: 09 Oct 2013 12:27
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2019 22:50
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/46620

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