J Glenn Gray entered the army as a private in May 1941, having been drafted on the same day he was informed of his doctorate in philosophy from Columbia University He was discharged as a second lieutenant in October 1945, having been awarded a battlefield commission during fighting in France Gray saw service in North Africa, Italy, France, and Germany in a counter espioJ Glenn Gray entered the army as a private in May 1941, having been drafted on the same day he was informed of his doctorate in philosophy from Columbia University He was discharged as a second lieutenant in October 1945, having been awarded a battlefield commission during fighting in France Gray saw service in North Africa, Italy, France, and Germany in a counter espionage unit Fourteen years after his discharge, Gray began to reread his war journals and letters in an attempt to find some meaning in his wartime experiences The result is The Warriors, a philosophical meditation on what warfare does to us and an examination of the reasons soldiers act as they do Gray explains the attractions of battle the adrenaline rush, the esprit de corps and analyzes the many rationalizations made by combat troops to justify their actions In the end, Gray notes, War reveals dimensions of human nature both above and below the acceptable standards for humanity.
The Warriors Reflections on Men in Battle J Glenn Gray entered the army as a private in May having been drafted on the same day he was informed of his doctorate in philosophy from Columbia University He was discharged as a second lieute
I had never heard of this book before, but it was a great study of men in combat J Glenn Gray was drafted on the same day he received his PhD in philosophy from Columbia University in May 1941 He was discharged as a 2nd Lieutenant in October 1945 Fourteen years later, Gray reread his war journals in an attempt to find some meaning in his wartime experiences He wrote this book, a philosophical meditation on what warfare does to us and why soldiers act as they do By the end, he notes, War reveals [...]
The very best thing I have read on the attractions of war come from this book Gray fought in WWII, survived, went to graduate school in philosophy, and decided to write a book I suspect that Chris Hedges War is a Force that Gives Us Meaning performs a similar function In the Western canon, this line of thinking comes from Hegel See especially, D.P Verene s chapter, Hegel s Account of War, in Hegel s Political Philosophy Problems Perspectives edited by Z A Pelczynski Hegel argues that war will ne [...]
Poignant and revealing about the soldier s experience before, during and after warfare Very helpful for writing in a soldier s POV, in fact I m just reading short selections, but I bought it to keep on hand for moments when I m struggling to get into my character s head.
An excellent read if you are in any way interested about the psychology of soldiers in war Gray had a PhD in philosophy when he was enlisted as a private in WWII and this book is a work of both psychology and philosophy He discusses WWII and the soldiers in it frankly, openly, and objectively as possible none of the good war bullshit For the time he was writing in, the 50s, some of his conclusions are surprising and prescient As a veteran myself, Gray gave a specific and clear voice to many thin [...]
Gray, a WWII veteran, reflects on the experience and psychology on this thoughtful if somewhat hit or miss book Clay weaves diary entries and letters into his argument, and he presents really profound and compelling experiences through these sources This is one of the first major works of combat psychology, although it is really of a philosophy book because there s not much genuine psychology in here.There were a number of points in this book I thought were fascinating One was the difference be [...]
I had read this book as a textbook while an undergraduate, but it was wasted on me then It was just words Now, as a slightly mature adult in my 50s, who has served in Bosnia and a couple of times in Afghanistan, it had resonance I re read it over Memorial Day weekend.I was struck by a couple of things The first was the depth and complexity of his entries in his war journal Amazing that he had the time and discipline to keep up with it.Another was that soldiers are fundamentally unchanged Despi [...]
I read this ages ago in college, and found it even moving when I reread it recently Gray essentially makes the same argument that Simone Weil does in her famous essay The Iliad or The Poem of Force Where Weil states that force turns combatants into things stone, Gray says Man as warrior is only partly a man, yet, fatefully enough this aspect of him is capable of transforming the whole In describing the abstract, Weil s style has the power of near poetic epigram, whereas Gray s style is somewhat [...]
Gray received his philosophy degree and his induction notice in the same batch of mail, and, instead of fighting with a rifle, served as a U.S Army intelligence officer in the ETO.As a set of philosophical reflections, and as a book written by a pacifist, this is not a representative WWII memoir For example, Gray s claim that many an American soldier felt shocked and ashamed 199 200 at the use of atomic weapons against Japan is not supported by accounts from frontline soldiers.That said, Gray s [...]
This book is outstanding It is rare for soldiers to have the capacity to reflect so deeply on their experience in war Most lack the tools, the insight or the inclination The resultant impact on identity is so overwhelming that it fells everything leaving no room much for reflection Gray s Doctorate in Philosophy no doubt provided a framework for him that most others lack and he kept a detailed diary to help the process when eventually, when time had passed he was able to undertake the task His e [...]
Written during the Cold War from the perspective of a conscript Army in WWII, it probably doesn t reflect well the feelings of our all contemporary volunteer force engaged in continual low intensity conflict My only criticism is that he glossed over the use of the atomic weapons to end the war as immoral, and failed to address his own involvement in torture of enemy POW s an issue that is of current interest But a very interesting read of the view of a combat soldier who also had a PhD in philos [...]
Philosophy I misinterpreted the title I thought it would contain individual reflections by men who had experienced battle It does, but only as occasional reference material It is mostly the author s own, quite dense and verbose personal reflections, insights and conclusions Which is fair enough He is, after all a philosopher Not my sort of thing and I did not finish it, so it would be inappropriate for me to rate.
Part essay, part memoir, this spare, elegant book on the psychology of war will stay with me for a long time Perhaps because the author has his doctorate in philosophy, I found his quest to describe the reasons why we go to war, how the soldier views war, and ultimately how war defines each soldier s quest for humanity hauntingly beautiful, and heartbreaking My favorite parts of the book were sections of his own personal journal during his time at a soldier in World War II.
It had all of the elements of a book I thought I d really get in to, but it never grabbed me A little too abstract and ethereal in spite of its subject matter Still, a thought provoking read In a way, it picks up where William James s much superficial The Moral Equivalent of War leaves off.
The explanation of what it s like, emotionally, to be in a war Written by a philosopher Well worth reading.
Moving, introspective, powerful.
Great book, but never got back to it regularly enough after eight months at my bedside.