History/Historical Fiction.

View previous topic View next topic Go down

History/Historical Fiction.

Post  El Taco on Wed Mar 16, 2011 12:21 pm

I've always been fascinated with history, it's always truly been one of my favorite subjects, if not my favorite. History of all sorts, throughout the many ages man has been through.

Recently though, of inherited my fathers fascination with one particular piece of history, one of the most commonly known. World War II, perhaps the most worldwide-affecting event in history, is also one much examined by in popular culture. As such, I have recently been looking much into WWII related fiction, including movies, novels, and all sorts. I hold that Letters from Iwo Jima is one of the, if not the single greatest film I've ever seen. Other'sI've seen and enjoyed include Flags of our Fathers and even Saving Private Ryan. Films I intend on seeing include Enemy at the Gates, A Bridge Too Far, and Midway.

Naturally, I've done much research into the historical era as well, not merely viewing works of fiction and going on with it. I do find fiction a more captivating way to look into era's of history, and seeing the various interpretations of the lives of those involved. Naturally, some glorify and make poor attempts at truly captivating the brutality and reality of some of our more conflicted era's, but those that can are truly wonders to read.

So I ask you, what eras of history most intrigue you? What about them intrigue you? What are your favorite works of Historical Fiction, be it film, novel, or even Video Game?
avatar
El Taco

Posts : 52
Join date : 2011-03-15

Characters
Name:
Stats:

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: History/Historical Fiction.

Post  Muffolithid on Wed Mar 16, 2011 1:07 pm

I'm not a huge fan of history or historical fiction, but my favorite era of all by far is the era of the Russian Revolution - 1917 on through the Cold War. I love stuff about the Soviets for some reason, and I find Josef Stalin to be one of those people who is fascinating in a simply horrifying way.

I'm a big fan of television shows that take place during specific time periods in American history, however. I enjoy shows like Boardwalk Empire and Deadwood that present a unique way to tell stories from their respective eras.
avatar
Muffolithid

Posts : 144
Join date : 2011-03-15
Location : Near Philadelphia

Characters
Name:
Stats:

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: History/Historical Fiction.

Post  El Taco on Wed Mar 16, 2011 1:09 pm

I find the Eastern Theatre of WWII to be perhaps the most interesting of the WWII fronts, so I'm with you on the Soviet thing. Razz
avatar
El Taco

Posts : 52
Join date : 2011-03-15

Characters
Name:
Stats:

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: History/Historical Fiction.

Post  Merc on Wed Mar 16, 2011 1:10 pm

My favourite novels are all about the common man in war. War is merely the progenitor for conflict, and the individual's response to it. It's a microcosm of the feelings that it invokes; terror, followed by long periods of boredom, adrenaline, camaraderie, tension, the feeling of dread and hollowness when you see a friend die and wonder if you are next. These are things that do not factor into normal existence, and if it does, not for long periods of time. War is something you live, not experience, for you are within looking out.

Another reason I enjoy such accounts is the ability to view human interaction on such a base and brutal level. We are always told that war is the most vile, the most disgusting, the most pointless exercise in the category of human endeavor; war solves nothing, and represents absolute evil. I personally think there is a rarely described nor discussed beauty to conflict of this nature; that war destroys civilian hypocrisy and, if it makes a man's boot come down grimly and harshly, at least makes it come down clean.

Judging by what you wrote, here's a small selection of my favourites you would enjoy:

  • The Forgotten Soldier by Guy Sajer. This is one of the greatest war novels ever written. It follows Sajer (a pseudonym) through his experience in the Grossdeutschland Division on the Eastern Front during the latter portion of World War II. The descriptions are so raw and visceral, and it is the only book I have read that gives such an emotional explanation of such an intensely chaotic time. Sajer is a skilled author and his prose is beautiful.
  • The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien. A collection of short stories following a platoon through Vietnam. Although fictional, it is based around Tim O'Brien's experiences and is uncompromising both in it's level of detail and the deep psychological issues it addresses, from ruminating on the meaning of war to the dynamic between officers, NCOs and enlisted personnel. Perhaps the best fictional encapsulation of the Vietnam War.
  • If I Die In A Combat Zone, also by Tim O'Brien. Structured in a similar manner to The Things They Carried, this book is autobiographical and is a non-fiction account of the author's deployment to Vietnam, including the months leading up to it, his upbringing and his eventual objection to the war as a whole. Despite being non-fiction, it is every bit as exciting and enthralling as The Things They Carried.
  • Dispatches, by Michael Herr. This was the book that first interested me in Vietnam. It follows Herr and his experiences as a war correspondent in Vietnam, winning the trust of the soldiers and becoming privy to their everyday lives. He travels to besieged Khe Sanh, spends time at a Special Forces camp and has a rather terrifying - if memorable - experience with a door gunner over the rice paddies. The book was a direct inspiration for Full Metal Jacket, and Herr was a writer for the film.

"And in the end, of course, a true war story is never about war. It's about sunlight. It's about the special way that dawn spreads out on a river when you know you must cross the river and march into the mountains and do things you are afraid to do. It's about love and memory. It's about sorrow. It's about sisters who never write back and people who never listen."
- Tim O'Brien
avatar
Merc
Admin

Posts : 38
Join date : 2011-02-21

Characters
Name: Dwellervorn
Stats:

View user profile http://threemileisland.forumotion.org

Back to top Go down

Re: History/Historical Fiction.

Post  Lucifer on Thu Mar 17, 2011 3:53 pm

The Things I Carried remains one of my favorite novels. You can really feel a lot of the emotion stowed away inside O'Brien from his experience in Vietnam escape into his writing.
avatar
Lucifer

Posts : 19
Join date : 2011-03-17

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: History/Historical Fiction.

Post  Tehwilburforce on Sun Mar 20, 2011 8:54 pm

Hmm... What about Great Depression Era? I read The Grapes of Wrath back in middle school. The adventure aspect in that book was phenomenal, but the ending kinda killed the book for me. It was just too awkward.
avatar
Tehwilburforce

Posts : 148
Join date : 2011-03-20
Location : North Tejas

Characters
Name: Sandor Hosok
Stats:

View user profile http://tehwilburforce.tumblr.com/

Back to top Go down

Re: History/Historical Fiction.

Post  Harrow on Tue Apr 12, 2011 7:27 am

Muffolithid wrote:I'm not a huge fan of history or historical fiction, but my favorite era of all by far is the era of the Russian Revolution - 1917 on through the Cold War. I love stuff about the Soviets for some reason, and I find Josef Stalin to be one of those people who is fascinating in a simply horrifying way.

QFT.
Red October is a fascinating thing to study, especially if you pose a few "what-ifs".
My favourite is what would happen if Lenin had lived another ten years. I've discussed it with a lot of people; the general idea being that Trotsky and Kamenev would've helped the tiny socialist groups in Spain, Italy and France blossom into full movements. Stalin would've been reigned into control and the whole face of WW2 could've been changed.

Although I'm also a massive fan of Saxon-era and Medieval history.
avatar
Harrow

Posts : 23
Join date : 2011-04-12

Characters
Name:
Stats:

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: History/Historical Fiction.

Post  Tehwilburforce on Tue Apr 12, 2011 11:03 am

We just read some O'Brien in my English class. I love the way he writes. Our teacher pointed out some of the aspects of how he describes different situations, like the use of the word "you" to refer to a commanding officer that he's imagining himself arguing with after he gets his draft letter.
avatar
Tehwilburforce

Posts : 148
Join date : 2011-03-20
Location : North Tejas

Characters
Name: Sandor Hosok
Stats:

View user profile http://tehwilburforce.tumblr.com/

Back to top Go down

Re: History/Historical Fiction.

Post  Justicarius on Wed Apr 20, 2011 10:41 am

I personally find Russian history to be the most fascinatingly entertaining. I think that Vladimir Lenin's an alright guy; the way he terraformed Russia after the revolution was great. I also found the general fanaticism (Whether borne by fear or brotherhood) of the Red Army to be incredibly admirable.

Other than that, I simply adore ancient Greek history and mythology. No, I'm not like the masses who claim to know much but have only been tutored by 300; I think the Spartans were an alright city state, but certainly not the best candidate to portray the artistic tastes in both war and the general ecosystem of classical Greece. Athens and Argos are my favorite city states. I've decided to teach myself how to write in Greek over spring break.

Of course, I hold medieval knightly orders, monkhood, and the like in the highest regard out of the entirety of historical content. I just love the medieval age, man.

El Taco wrote:I hold that Letters from Iwo Jima is one of the, if not the single greatest film I've ever seen. Other'sI've seen and enjoyed include Flags of our Fathers and even Saving Private Ryan. Films I intend on seeing include Enemy at the Gates, A Bridge Too Far, and Midway.

Seen all of those; all great. Didn't like A Bride Too Far as the rest, though. If you loved Saving Private Ryan and the others though, you simply must see the Band of Brothers series. Rent it, buy it, Tivo it, steal it; I don't care, you have just got to see it.
avatar
Justicarius

Posts : 16
Join date : 2011-03-17
Location : Orthear

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: History/Historical Fiction.

Post  Harrow on Thu Apr 21, 2011 9:11 pm

I'm going to add that the Sharpe serious is an excellent example of historical fiction.
Takes a few liberties here and there but is absolutely thrilling.

There's also the televised versions of the books in which Sean Bean plays a character who, for once, doesn't go AWOL/backstabbing/dying.
I have an audio cassette of Sharpe's Tiger narrated by him, too.
avatar
Harrow

Posts : 23
Join date : 2011-04-12

Characters
Name:
Stats:

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: History/Historical Fiction.

Post  El Taco on Fri Apr 22, 2011 9:52 am

The mention of Sean Bean intrigues me.

So, it`s been a little while since I posted this, and I saw all the movies I mentioned I planned on, in addition to Defiance. (All of which I enjoyed.) I read The Forgotten Soldier, and Merc, I gotta thank you for recommending that to me. It was some pretty powerful stuff.

Anyway, in addition to WWII (which in no way I've left behind), I've started expanding in-depth research into the Vietnam War, the Korean War, and the Great War, just as the great conflicts of the nineteen-hundreds. The WWII information has me looking at the evolution of warfare, even just over the past century. Actually, what I'm largely looking into is the various effects all these conflicts have had on the nations involved. Some of it is pretty phenomenal stuff.

Seen all of those; all great. Didn't like A Bride Too Far as the rest, though. If you loved Saving Private Ryan and the others though, you simply must see the Band of Brothers series. Rent it, buy it, Tivo it, steal it; I don't care, you have just got to see it.
A Bridge Too Far certainly wasn't quite at the same level as some of the others, mainly on one level. They tried to fit too many plots and characters into it, and weren't able to really develop them or put any depth into them, save maybe Anthony Hopkins and Sean Connery. Nevertheless, I thought it was pretty damn good, and well worth watching.

I've heard about Band of Brothers, and I've been meaning to see The Pacific, which has been described as the sister series to Band of Brothers. Anyway, I'll be sure to see them both.
avatar
El Taco

Posts : 52
Join date : 2011-03-15

Characters
Name:
Stats:

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: History/Historical Fiction.

Post  Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum