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August 24 , 2007

Global Cold War Literature

Western, Eastern and Postcolonial Perspectives


In countries worldwide, the Cold War dominated politics, society and culture during the second half of the twentieth century. Global Cold War Literatures offers a unique look at the multiple ways in which writers from Asia, Africa, Europe and North and South America addressed the military conflicts, revolutions, propaganda wars and ideological debates of the era.

While including essays on western European and North American literature, the volume views First World writing, not as central to the period, but as part of an international discussion of Cold War realities in which the most interesting contributions often came from marginal or subordinate cultures. To this end, there is an emphasis on the literatures of the Second and Third Worlds, including essays on Latin American poetry, Soviet travel writing, Chinese autobiography, African theatre, North Korean literature, Cuban and eastern European fiction, and Middle Eastern fiction and poetry.

With the post-Cold War era still in a condition of emergence, it is essential that we look back to the 1945-89 period to understand the political and cultural forces that shaped the modern world. The volume’s analysis of those forces and its focus on many of the ‘hot spots’ – Afghanistan, Iran, North Korea – that define the contemporary ‘war on terror’, make this an essential resources for those working in Postcolonial, American and English Literatures, as well as in History, Comparative Literature, European Studies and Cultural Studies. Global Cold War Literatures is a suitable companion volume to Hammond's Cold War Literature: Writing the Global Conflict, also available from Routledge.

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