The stories we tell about war allow us to grapple with extreme and overwhelming experiences, to celebrate great sacrifices and condemn atrocities. But how do these shared mythologies form, and where should the line be drawn between what is deserving of commemoration and what is best left forgotten? What wartime stories remain untold, and why?
Griffith Review 48: Enduring Legacies draws together distinguished soldiers, military historians, academics and popular writers in a collection that goes against the grain of popular war narratives — uncovering the multifaceted legacies of people typically omitted from our commemoration of the wars of the twentieth century, and providing new insights, graphic portraits and telling analyses of their consequences. Contributor David Carlin recalls a lifelong family friendship forged by his grandfather and an Italian PoW; Joy Damousi explores the lingering war memories of the Greek diaspora in Australia, while Jeannine Baker illuminates the often unrecognised contributions of women to war reporting and combat journalism.
Carlin, Damousi and Baker will join Griffith Review editor Julianne Schultz for a discussion about how conflict has shaped modern Australia at various levels — and how can we understand them more fully.