Zinky Boys Soviet Voices from the Afghanistan War

ISBN-10: 0393336867

ISBN-13: 9780393336863

Edition: N/A

Authors: Svetlana Alexi�vich, Larry Heinemann

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From 1979 to 1989 a million Soviet troops engaged in a devastating war in Afghanistan that claimed 50,000 casualties--and the youth and humanity of many tens of thousands more. Creating controversy and outrage when it was first published in the USSR--it was called by reviewers there a "slanderous piece of fantasy" and part of a "hysterical chorus of malign attacks"--Zinky Boys presents the candid and affecting testimony of the officers and grunts, nurses and prostitutes, mothers, sons, and daughters who describe the war and its lasting effects. What emerges is a story that is shocking in its brutality and revelatory in its similarities to the American experience in Vietnam. The Soviet dead were shipped back in sealed zinc coffins (hence the term "Zinky Boys"), while the state denied the very existence of the conflict. Svetlana Alexievich brings us the truth of the Soviet-Afghan War: the beauty of the country and the savage Army bullying, the killing and the mutilation, the profusion of Western goods, the shame and shattered lives of returned veterans. Zinky Boys offers a unique, harrowing, and unforgettably powerful insight into the realities of war.
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Book details

List price: $15.95
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company, Incorporated
Publication date: 9/30/1992
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 224
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.00" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 0.748

Born and raised in Chicago, Larry Heinemann is the author of three novels and numerous short stories and essays. In his novels Close Quarters and Paco's Story, which won the National Book Award for fiction in 1986, Heinemann used his experience as an infantryman with the 25th Division of the U.S. Army in the Vietnam War to relate the horrors of war. The novel Cooler by the Lake, written in 1992, was Heinemann's first attempt at writing a book with a theme other than war. Heinemann's short stories and essays have appeared in a multitude of journals and magazines, among them Harper's, Playboy, Atlantic Monthly, Entertainment Weekly, Tri-Quarterly, and the Vietnam Writers Association Journal of Arts and Letters. He has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, The National Endowment for the Arts, and the Illinois Arts Council. Lecturing and teaching at universities, writer's workshops, and veteran's groups in the United States, Vietnam, England, China, and the Soviet Union have kept Heinemann quite busy, although he still considers himself a "househusband."

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