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A Civil War of Words

The Cultural Impact of the Great War in Catalonia, Spain, Europe and a Glance at Latin America


Edited By Xavier Pla, Maximiliano Fuentes and Francesc Montero

The Great War did not only mark the history of the twentieth century: to a large extent, the conflict also affected culture and literature in Europe and the rest of the world. This collection of essays aims to provide the reader with a broad and transdisciplinary perspective on the cultural and political impact of the Great War. Using a comparative approach and focusing on Catalonia and Spain, this volume reflects the enormous variety of representations of the ‘theatre of war’ in both neutral and belligerent countries, causing a significant rejuvenation in fiction and journalistic genres in the subsequent decades.
This book features essays by some of the most important specialists in the First World War from Spain, Italy, Portugal, the United Kingdom and Latin America, who, in the centenary of the conflict, provide an innovative critical approach to this crucial event in contemporary history.
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Shell-Shocked Legacies: Narratives of Trauma in Virginia Woolf, W. H. R. Rivers and Pat Barker


…the story of a wound that cries out


In December 1917, Dr W. H. R. Rivers delivered before the Section of Psychiatry of the Royal Society of Medicine a lecture titled ‘The Repression of War Experience’, published two months later in The Lancet.1 Dr Rivers was a psychiatrist, neurologist and anthropologist who during the war worked as a Royal Army Medical Corps captain at Craiglockhart War Hospital treating officers suffering of a wide array of mental and nervous disorders. He was one of the first in the United Kingdom to use psychoanalysis in the treatment of war neurosis, or what was commonly known as shell shock. The point Rivers made in his paper was that the usual method of treatment, inducing the patients not to think about the war and to forget their traumatic experiences was counterproductive and aggravated the symptoms. According to Rivers’s observations in a number of clinical cases, some of the worse symptoms of neurosis were caused not by the original event but by the strain of trying to repress its memory. Furthermore, Rivers believed that a soldier who was deemed recovered because he managed not to think about the war was more likely to break down when made to return to the front after release, as everything there would remind him of the memories he was trying to avoid. Rivers thus recommended a talking ← 177 | 178 → cure in which the patient was encouraged to recollect the experience and...

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