• June 24, 2019

Achilles in Vietnam by Jonathan Shay On Killing by Dave Grossman What It is Like to Go to War by Karl Marlantes Military Neuropsychology by Carrie H. Dive deep into Jonathan Shay’s Achilles in Vietnam with extended analysis, commentary, and discussion. Jonathan Shay’s Achilles in Vietnam and Odysseus in. America. Richard Blucher, Department of International Studies, The Norwegian Military Academy, PO Box.

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The Achilles argument was enlightening because it contextualized war within the scope of thousands of years of history and thousands of years of soldiering. It opens the way for berserk rage, whay I will describe in chapter 5. They wanted to give us a fucking Unit Citation — them fucking maggots. Democratic political activity presupposes that the future exists and that it is meaningful.

I found a frightening similarity between many of the Vietnam experiences and those of the recent wars in the Middle East. The Iliad becomes a sword-and-sandals Hollywood cliche and the Odyssey becomes the original road movie. We shall hear this man’s voice and the voices of other combat veterans many times in these pages.

Achilles in Vietnam: Combat Trauma and the Undoing of Character

The Iliadic tack of this book also makes it deal in a more sophisticated way with the nature of stories as a source of learning, and that makes this, I think, a more compelling, and more truthful channeling of veteran voices than comes through in other books on the psychology of war e. Journal of Religion and Health.

Although the Iliad was written twenty-seven centuries ago it has much to teach about combat xchilles, as do the more jonarhan, compelling voices and experiences of Vietnam vets. The best way to describe this is that what may look good on paper does not necessarily work on the ground. There were times when we’d rather use their weapons than our own.


Officers vienam every, armed force must find ways of jknathan their men to fight and risk their lives — a most unnatural activity And compared to World War II, there were simply too many officers in Vietnam, leading them to become so absorbed in bureaucratic processes that the most elementary aspects of leadership dropped beyond their horizon. This book had some really interesting observations in it. So the argument did its job. There was a bay there This book makes the argument that the most profound impact of war is its capacity to transform typical, innocent young men into monsters who do not care for anyone.

May 12, Thomas rated it it was amazing Shelves: The pain and rage at being blamed for defeat in Vietnam was beyond bearing and resulted in many brawls.

Jonathan Shay

In that process I have become convinced that it is the deconstruction of the sense of self that leads to the damage of the soul so evident with Vietnam and I have no doubt Afghanistan and Iraq veterans and this book confirms that view. Instead, in a deliberate and concrete way, he shows how vitally important leadership qualities are in the military. All of this averages out to a 6. I have abandoned these discussions, because the sense of betrayal is still too great and the equation of defeat with abandonment by God and personal devaluation still too vivid.

In some ways this book seems to be written especially for military commanders, as a reminder that the lesson of the Iliad is still ringing in our ears: This may sound like a child complaining, “It’s not fair!

More books from this vletnam Finding a way to manage the emotional consequences of combat experience was a matter of simple communal survival, and denial of moral breakdown more difficult for people constantly surrounded by it.

The fucking colonel says, “Don’t worry about it. I do wish there was more of the Iliad for balance, but overall they were both well done. Existing trails, acholles would allow the company to move more quickly without the long labor of cutting through, were likewise mined and booby-trapped as well as invitations to ambush.


Thank you for signing up, fellow book lover! We were doing it for your faith. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Others circulate as traditions, archetypal stories of things to be emulated or shunned, and accepted truth about what is praise-worthy and what is culpable.

Achilles in Vietnam: Combat Trauma and the Undoing of Character by Jonathan Shay

Add to Cart Add to Cart. Must redeem within 90 days. But be prepared for racist and dehumanizing quotations, as well as graphic descriptions johathan death.

Although the Iliad was written twenty-seven centuries ago it has much to teach about combat traumaas do the more recent, compelling voices and experiences of Vietnam vets. Aren’t terror, shock, horror, and grief at the death of friends trauma enough?

Betrayal particularly by our politicians who lied us into war for their own political ends and by a wider society which just dismissed our service as inconsequential at best and as somehow morally flawed at worst. As I listen to some veterans, there are times when it seems they believe that the Vietnamese cannot have won the war.

When you are on the floor, you may be exposed to direct customer contact, and in some positions that can be really draining. But the basic truths of war, if not necessarily the precise techniques of battle or the exact people in battle, remain the same from Troy to Homer to our own time.