"Just to describe you: You're a large man, a big boned man.
" ..The most fascinating oral history you'll hear
this week. Prendergast endured a German labor camp after being captured during the battle of the bulge, and witnessed the fire bombing of Dresden from 15 miles away. Interviews were recorded
as source material for Studs Terkel
's book: The Good War
My subject is War, and the pity of War.
The Poetry is in the pity…
All a poet can do today is warn.
Two 20th century choral masterpieces share more than Biblical texts. Benjamin Britten’s well known War Requiem, Op. 66
and Rudolf Mauersberger’s
lesser known Wie liegt die Stadt so wüst
were both written in response to the destruction of medieval architecture and major churches in WWII bombings.
Since 1956, the cities of Coventry and Dresden have been twinned
to promote peace and understanding. [more inside]
Mr. Vonnegut talked about my dad a lot and put him into a lot of his books. Sometimes he was Dad, and sometimes he was just a character Mr. Vonnegut made up. So what I would say to any of you who are wondering is this: My dad was what people called a real character, which always made us laugh because it was so literally true owing to his association with a famous fiction writer. He could also get pretty obnoxious. But he was a good man. And he definitely wasn’t crazy. At least not until the brain tumor.
Kurt Vonnegut Didn't Know Doodly-Squat About Writing: Finally, Literary Analysis Worth Reading
by Bernard V. O'Hare, with an introduction by Meghan O'Hare.
"Look at the surrealist moustache on the Mona Lisa.
Just a silly joke? Consider where this joke can lead. I had been working with Malcolm Mc Neill
for five years on an illustrated book entitled Ah Pook Is Here
, and we used the same idea: Hieronymous Bosch as the background for scenes and characters taken from the Mayan codices
and transformed into modern counterparts. That face in the Mayan Dresden Codex
will be the barmaid in this scene, and we can use the Vulture God
over here. Bosch, Michelangelo, Renoir, Monet, Picasso — steal anything in sight. You want a certain light on your scene? Lift it from Monet. You want a 1930s backdrop? Use Hopper
." -- William S. Burroughs, Les Voleurs [more inside]
On November 14, 1940, German bombers flew through the skies for nine hours above Coventry, England in a raid that Winston Churchill probably didn't know about
but if he did, did nothing to prepare for
. The bombers dropped thousands of pounds of explosives and incendiaries that resulted in hundreds of deaths and huge destruction. Coventry, perhaps best known before the war for naked horseback riding
and the manufacture of pretty-but-malfunction-prone automobiles
, was also home to a grand cathedral
, St. Michael's Church
, one of the greatest cathedrals in England. The cathedral was nearly destroyed; the fire left behind little but debris and the still-standing outer walls and spire
. [more inside]
From the outside it's hard to guess this is a car factory
. But then again, even from the inside the parquet floors
and lack of shelves
may have thrown you off. Welcome to VW's Incredible Glass Factory
Risen from the ashes.
For nearly half a century, the ruins of the Dresden Frauenkirche
lay untouched, as a memorial to the Allied bombardment in February 1945 that devastated the city. Over the past decade, the church has been painstakingly rebuilt, with assistance from former enemies
. Today it was reconsecrated
How bad was the bombing of Dresden?
It seems there is a veritable industry dedicated to debunking the various and sundry historical accounts different groups hold sacred. I was raised by pacifists and was made very familiar with the stories of Hiroshima, Nagasaki and Dresden, in particular. According to this man's new book
, the firebombing of Dresden wasn't quite as bad as it has been made out to be. In fact, much of the evidence for the numbers of dead come from an historian who has since been discredited as a holocaust denier
. Others would argue that a war crime
is a war crime
is a war crime
In the end, do the specific numbers really matter? How less evil is 25,000 dead than 135,000?