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Lost Battalions: The Great War and the Crisis of American Nationality

3.83  ·  Rating Details ·  41 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
“A work of stunning density and penetrating analysis . . . Lost Battalions deploys a narrative symmetry of gratifying complexity.”—David Levering Lewis, The Nation

During the bloodiest days of World War I, no soldiers served more valiantly than the African American troops of the 369th Infantry—the fabled Harlem Hellfighters—and the legendary 77th “lost battalion” composed o
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Hardcover, 656 pages
Published November 29th 2005 by Henry Holt and Co.
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The Trigger by Tim ButcherAll Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria RemarqueThe Guns of August by Barbara W. TuchmanA Farewell to Arms by Ernest HemingwayBirdsong by Sebastian Faulks
The Great War
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(showing 1-30)
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Matt
Apr 26, 2016 Matt rated it really liked it
Shelves: world-war-i
On a random Saturday last April, I visited the National World War I Museum in Kansas City. It is a huge and architecturally imposing building, with some beautiful sight lines and an overall plan that seems designed to signify national grandeur (the defiant obelisk, the flag-lined drive leading to the main entrance). The day I went there was a steady flow of visitors, but nothing resembling a crowd. Certainly nothing resembling the crowds at KC’s popular barbeque joints.

The interior of the museu
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William
My second reading of this book finds me improving my rating from three to four stars. Slotkin's work here is a very effective examination of the negotiation (or, for African-Americans, the continued negation) of identity and citizenship in American society through the crucible of the First World War. Lost Battalions won't provide the reader with a comprehensive understanding of the war from beginning to end, or even from American entry to the Armistice, but it is an exceptional discussion of the ...more
Kenneth Barber
Dec 16, 2014 Kenneth Barber rated it really liked it
This book is a narrative on the First world War and and ethnicity in America. The need for soldiers for the coming was war lead to an unwritten social pact with hyphenated Americans, blacks and other minorities. This pact seemed to offer full acceptance as Americans in return for their service. The author follows the fortunes of Black units and the77th division known as the rainbow division because of its racial diversity. The slights and indignities that they had to endure were many. Even ...more
Fraser Sherman
Aug 01, 2014 Fraser Sherman rated it really liked it
Shelves: history
More like 4.5 stars. Like The Burglary, which I reviewed a while back, this is creepily familiar in its portrayal of a wartime America where dissent is equated to treason. Slotkin's focus is on the "Melting Pot" battalion (a mixed race unit drawn from New York immigrants) and the Harlem Hellfighters (black troops) both believing that by fighting alongside white America in WWI, they'd prove themselves as 100 percent American as the WASPs who looked down on them. Unfortunately, white America ...more
KOMET
This book tells the story of two U.S. Army combat units, one African-American and the other composed of Eastern & Southern European immigrants, which defied prevailing stereotypes and distinguished themselves on the Western Front in 1918.
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Carol Storm
Jan 07, 2014 Carol Storm rated it it was amazing
Brilliant book about forgotten heroes in a forgotten war.
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Richard Slotkin (1942-) is a cultural critic, historian, and novelist
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