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No man's land: writings from a world at war

No man's land: writings from a world at war

Ayrton, Pete, editor of compilation

The Great War gave birth to some of the 20th century's most celebrated writing; from Brooke to Sassoon, the poetry generated by the war is etched into collective memory. But it is in prose fiction that we find some of the most profound insights into the war's individual and communal tragedies, the horror of life in the trenches and the grand farce of the first industrial war. Featuring 47 writers from 20 different nations, representing all the main participants in the conflict, 'No Man's Land' is a truly international anthology of First World War fiction

Hardback, Book. English.
Published London: Serpent's Tail, 2014
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Statement of responsibility: by Pete Ayrton
ISBN: 1846689252, 9781846689253
Physical Description: 500 pages ; 24 cm
Subject: Adventure.; Short Stories.; General.; War stories.; World War, 1914-1918 Fiction.

Author note

Pete Ayrton was born in London in 1943. After studying and briefly teaching philosophy, a period of left-wing tourism in France and Italy led to his learning to read and converse in these languages, and to take part in the intense, opaque discourses of Marxism. A period of work as translator led to a job as editor with Pluto Press and to his founding in 1986 of Serpent's Tail with the specific remit of publishing fiction in translation; this includes two First World War classics Frederic Manning's Her Privates We and Gabriel Chevallier's Fear, both represented in No Man's Land.


Splendid ... what a cast Ayrton has assembled ... The war, in all its calculated cruelty, its human impact, its formidable weapons of death and destruction and - yes - its futility, is captured brilliantly in this remarkable, wide-ranging anthology
Herald||Trailblazing ... even avid readers of First World War prose will find eye-opening discoveries here
Independent||The essential collection of writing from the First World War ... wonderfully wide-ranging
The Times||Handsomely produced ... impressive ... intriguing ... Ayrton's volume will undoubtedly send people in search of the books from which he has drawn such enticing extracts. It also stands as a tribute to the art of translation ... This marvellous book truly lives up to its subtitle
Times Literary Supplement||Every week, of every year, literary editors find among the haul of new books at least two about the world wars of the last century. In this centenary year the proportion has dramatically increased. This book, however, is different. If you want to know what the Great War of 1914-18 was really like, you need read no other. Peter Ayrton has collected the best prose about that war ... Every extract rings with authenticity ... He makes us understand that it was, truly, a world war ... Ayrton's selections direct sharp spotlights on significant extracts from many of the greatest writers.
The Tablet