Thursday, 20 August 2015
Marching Through Georgia: The Morals Of The Story
A very large oak tree can grow from a very small acorn. Also, the spectrum of possible social moralities is broad enough to encompass diametrical opposites. Consequently, we should always question our own received values - although how many do?
"War is Hell!" and should be described as such. Passages like:
"The loudest sound was the shrill screaming of the wounded - men lying thrashing with helmets, weapons, harness nailed to their bodies."
-SM Stirling, Marching Through Georgia (New York, 1991), p. 201 -
- are not (I trust) enjoyable to read but should be read. I have previously enjoyed accounts of battles, e.g., in Poul Anderson's The People Of The Wind and Ensign Flandry, where the emphasis was on the excitement of the conflict, not on the suffering of the wounded and dying. However, real war is about pain, disfigurement and death.