Marks of War: War Neurosis and the Legacy of Kokoda

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Lythrum Press, 2003 - Kokoda Trail (Papua New Guinea) - 205 pages
The author has been a practising psychologist since 1975. He has had a long term interest in the impact of traumatic events. For over 10 years he has been researching the effects of war service on veterans and their families. This book is based on research he conducted for his PhD thesis at the University of Adelaide.

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Absorbing, interesting book on the way that the state renders the veteran and his/her health pathological and personal. The many labels and medico-legal arguments that abound seek weakness in the constitution of the veteran, so that they can absolve the institutions of war of responsibility for turning young men into cannon fodder. I read the book several years ago but it stands out, the interview material was compelling and the narrative curious and empathetic, factual and interpretive. A social history about the way that the military complex churns the bodies of young men (this is WW2) through the great war machine leaving them to the beds of the Ward 17s across the nation.  

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