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Book Title: Undertones of War|
The author of the book: Edmund Blunden
Date of issue: 1992
ISBN 13: 9780140182958
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 25.30 MB
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In this World War One autobiography, the poet Edmund Blunden records his experiences as an infantry subaltern in France and Flanders. Enlisting at the age of 20 in 1916, he took part in the disastrous battles of the Somme, Ypres and Passchendaele, describing the latter as "murder, not only to the troops, but to their singing faiths and hopes". He tells of the many evidences of endurance, heroism, and despair found among the officers and men of his battalion. This volume, which also contains a selection of his war poems, reveals the close affinity which Blunden felt with the natural world. While he laments the loss of optimism, the betrayal of promise and the futility wrought by the war, Blunden finds hope in the natural landscape; it is the only thing which survives the terrible betrayal enacted in the Flanders fields. The author died in 1974.
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Read information about the authorAuthor, critic, and poet (the latter which for which he is most well known) Edmund Blunden was born in London, and educated at The Queen's College at Oxford. In 1915 he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant with the Royal Sussex Regiment which he served with through the end of the war. He saw heavy action on the Western Front at both Ypres and the Somme, and was awarded the Military Cross. Miraculously he was never severely injured.
Following the war he served as Professor of English at the University of Tokyo from 1924-1927. He returned to England as magazine editor, and in 1931 he became a tutor at Oxford University where his writing career flourished. Post Second World War he became Professor of English Literature in Hong Kong.
He succeeded fellow Great War poet Robert Graves as Oxford Professor of Poetry, but lecturing proved to be a strain and he resigned after two years. His remaining years were spent in Suffolk, where he died in 1974.
He remained good friends with fellow poet Siegfried Sassoon, and during his career edited some of the first editions of Wilfred Owen and Ivor Gurney's poetry contributing to their memory. He is commemorated on a plaque in Westminster Abbey along with 15 other poets of the First World War.
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