Mankind's only alternative 28   JAN.   23  
Mankind's only alternative
War Nerd RSS

The Fall of The eXile For all those wondering what the "Save The eXile Fundrasier" banner is all about, here it is as simply as it can be phrased: The eXile is shutting down.
June 11, 2008 in eXile Blog

War Nerd: War of the Babies in Taki's Magazine The War Nerd talks about babies, the greatest weapon of the 20th century.
May 28, 2008 in eXile Blog

Kids, Meet Your President A website for Russian kids to learn all about President Medvedev's passion for school, sports and family.
May 22, 2008 in eXile Blog

Cellphone Democracy Cam If this girl was exposed to Jeffersonian democracy...
May 20, 2008 in Face Control

More Classy B&W Dyev Photos Yet another hot Russian babe imitating the Catpower look...
May 20, 2008 in Face Control

Proof That Genetic Memory Is Real! Sure, the Ottomans shut down the Istanbul Slavic slave markets centuries ago...
May 15, 2008 in Face Control

Russia's Orthodox Church Youth Outreach Program The priest is going, "Father Sansei is very impressed with grasshopper Sasha’s...
May 15, 2008 in Face Control

More Classy B&W Club Photos w/Russian Dyevs We took the Pepsi Challenge here...
May 15, 2008 in Face Control

Blogs RSS feed

Book Review June 12, 2003
Bardamu in Kuwait
By John Dolan Browse author Email
Page 4 of 4
Wince, wince my face. This is such a shocking fall in writing level that I wonder if James Frey, subject of my last review, hacked into Swofford's manuscript and added a conclusion. Here are all Frey's worst stylistic mannerisms: bombastic abstraction invariably hijacked by the suffering "I," the moronic reliance on repetition of a few maudlin words like "alone," loss of all tonal modulation in the drive to magnify one's other words, the whole bag of tricks that workshop prose writers seem to have borrowed from English-language poetry of the mid-twentieth century. (What, do they teach prose writers to imitate Bly and Merwin at Iowa these days?)

This silly maundering just isn't worthy of the Anthony Swoffordwho wrote the first 254 pages of this book. It's almost as if Oprah, James Frey, and the Grief Counsellors had staged a last-minute coup inside Swofford's head, aided by his misguided reading of the old fool Camus, and made an almost comic mess of the end of the book.

The war Swofford took such care to describe can't be reduced to an "atrocity." It's something less grand and far trickier than that. Swofford and his fellow American dirtheads are not cannon-fodder on the Western Front. For one thing, none of them die in combat. A war where no one in your unit is killed; where an officer grabs the radio from you in order to claim the one little kill your unit will get; and where the only combat trauma is a cheap trick used to get pity fucks back in the bars of Sacramento; that's not an atrocity. That's a comedy, and not a very dark one. It's just good, healthy primate hooting.

If only that giant Hawaiian gym buddy hadn't deserted, he could've set the author straight pretty quick: "Swoff, stop that existentializin'!"

SHARE:  Digg  My Web  Facebook  Reddit

Browse author

The Kurds Will Always Lose, Part II : The enemy of your enemy is a pig, too
Babushka Dezhurnaya
Field Guide To Moscow: Dolor Recto :
In Brief
Guardian Correspondent Reveals Reading Disorder :

The Messiah Is Mobile : Jesus called, and he wants his old number back


Save The eXile: The War Nerd Calls Mayday
The future of The eXile is in your hands! We're holding a fundraiser to save the paper, and your soul. Tune in to Gary Brecher's urgent request for reinforcements and donate as much as you can. If you don't, we'll be overrun and wiped off the face of the earth, forever.

Scanning Moscow’s Traffic Cops
Automotive Section
We’re happy to introduce a new column in which we publish Moscow’s raw radio communications, courtesy of a Russian amateur radio enthusiast. This issue, eXile readers are given a peek into the secret conversations of Moscow’s traffic police, the notorious "GAIshniki."

Eleven Years of Threats: The eXile's Incredible Journey
Feature Story By The eXile
Good Night, and Bad Luck: In a nation terrorized by its own government, one newspaper dared to fart in its face. Get out your hankies, cuz we’re taking a look back at the impossible crises we overcame.

Your Letters
Russia's freedom-loving free market martyr Mikhail Khodorkovsky answers some of this week's letters, and he's got nothing but praise for President Medvedev.

Clubbing Adventures Through Time
Club Review By Dmitriy Babooshka
eXile club reviewer Babooshka takes a trip through time with the ghost of Moscow clubbing past, present and future, and true to form, gets laid in the process.

The Fortnight Spin
Bardak Calendar By Jared Lindquist
Jared comes out with yet another roundup of upcoming bardak sessions.

Your Letters
Richard Gere tackles this week's letters. Now reformed, he fights for gerbil rights all around the world.

13 Toxic Talents: Hollywood’s Worst Polluters
America By Eileen Jones
Everybody complains about celebrities, but nobody does anything about them. People, it’s time to stop fretting about whether we’re a celebrity-obsessed culture—we are, we have been, we’re going to be—and instead take practical steps to clean up the celebrity-obsessed culture we’ve got...


    MAIN    |    RUSSIA    |    WAR NERD     |    [SIC!]    |    BAR-DAK    |    THE VAULT    |    ABOUT US    |    RSS

© "the eXile". Tel.: +7 (495) 623-3565, fax: +7 (495) 623-5442