Books That Inspire 2006

The Great War and Modern Memory
Paul Fussell

Sometimes two books with little in common can speak to each other. Fussell’s exploration of the British experience during WWI is a fascinating study of how soldiers coped with the vast and terrible modernity of war. Although Fussell never mentions J. R. R. Tolkien in his discussion of the literary response to the Great War, this book helped me understand its effect on The Lord of the Rings and led me to research the depiction and philosophy of war in Tolkien’s works. As well, it introduced me to the WWI poets and a better understanding of war as a human phenomenon.
Janet Brennan Croft
Head of Access Services
University Libraries