Antiwar literary and philosophical selections

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Anti-war essays, poems, short stories and literary excerpts

Georges Duhamel: Selections on war

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Georges Duhamel
From The Heart’s Domain (La Possession du monde) (1919)
Translated by Eleanor Stimson Brooks

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I remember seeing hills that had been disemboweled by a bombardment and were sown with long splinters of twisted iron; the base of a monstrous shell appeared before me, one day, under these conditions, and it seemed to me truly inhuman, this product of the work of men: the noble metal, with which so many good and beautiful things can be made, took on a hateful appearance. Man had achieved the mournful miracle of denaturing nature, rendering it ignoble and criminal.

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An unhealthy curiosity and the taste for anomalies incline us to take pleasure in seeing a creature perform an action for which its own organism seems unsuited. It palls very quickly. For a long time now, for…

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