“I’m not letting him, or any other gook sonovabitch get anywhere close to me. Especially near my eyes!”
This conversation was going nowhere fast, but he didn’t have the option of choosing another surgeon; it was the only specialist available in this region for the relatively rare ocular condition that was slowly blinding my 80-year-old combat veteran therapy patient. Dr. Kim’s highly respected reputation mattered not. As it were, he happened to be of Chinese ethnicity.
That was all Don needed to know. He had served with the “Triple Nickel” 555th Military Police Battalion during the Korean War. From the outset, he was clear that he was still filled with rage towards his former enemy. Curiously, he reserved his deepest vitriol not for the North Koreans, but for their Chinese allies who had joined the effort to push the Americans off the peninsula and into the sea…
Close encounters in war are, before anything else, life experiences that change in depth those who make them. As editors of the Close Encounters in War Journal, we have always been aware of this simple but basic fact and therefore decided to open the third issue of the journal (2020) to creative writing. We wanted to propose an experimental encounter between scholarly research and forms of creative and non-fictional writing whose roots go deep into experience and imagination.
After that exciting experience, being aware that stories and poems of close encounters in war deserve a place of their own in the website, we are happy to announce the launch of the new section “Stories and poems of close encounters in war“.
This new section of the journal is divided into three subsections (Poetry, Fiction, and Testimonies and Autobiographical Essays) and is meant to be a space for creativity and exploration of all those forms of writing that help us understand war more thoroughly as a multifaceted and complex experience. We invite storytellers, veterans, practitioners, relatives and friends of veterans, poets, therapists, and much more to feel free to submit their contributions to the CEIWJ. We will be happy and grateful to read year round your original and unpublished works about your encounters in and with war, real and imagined. We will select and publish the best, more insightful, and inspiring contributions.
Primo Levi’s work presents an extraordinarily rich and articulated case of intertextuality. Being a curious, omnivorous, and asystematic reader, Levi explored multiple fields of knowledge – literary, scientific, historical, etc. – browsing between specialized and popular books and magazines, for reasons of research or pure entertainment, often approaching foreign cultures in the original language, driven by his eclectic curiosity and an intense desire to know and understand. Already fathomed in part by Levi himself in his anthology The Search for Roots (1981), his library remains however to be discovered. This volume intends to trace the features of a critical map of the grafts, intertexts and transplants that link Levi’s work to the books of others, by comparing it with twenty-one authors, in a “polyglot and multipurpose” gallery that includes classics such as Dante, Shakespeare, Leopardi, Baudelaire, and Carroll; authors of modern literature such as Kafka, Mann, and Calvino; and scientists such as Galileo, Darwin, Heisenberg, and Lorenz.
Table of contents
Domenico Scarpa: Prefazione xi Gianluca Cinelli e Robert S. C. Gordon: Introduzione 1
Parte I – Gli strumenti umani Antonio Di Meo: Primo Levi e William Henry Bragg 19 Mario Porro: Primo Levi e Galileo Galilei 37 Patrizia Piredda: Primo Levi e Werner Heisenberg 55 Alberto Cavaglion: Primo Levi e Giuseppe Gioachino Belli 73 Enzo Ferrara: Primo Levi e Stanislaw Lem 87 Stefano Bartezzaghi: Primo Levi e Lewis Carroll 107
Parte II – La condizione umana Vittorio Montemaggi: Primo Levi e Dante 127 Valentina Geri: Primo Levi e William Shakespeare 143 Simone Ghelli: Primo Levi e Pierre Bayle 161 Martina Piperno: Primo Levi e Giacomo Leopardi 179 Damiano Benvegnù: Primo Levi e Konrad Lorenz 197 Pierpaolo Antonello: Primo Levi e Charles Darwin 215
Parte III – Comprendere e narrare il Lager Charles L. Leavitt IV: Primo Levi e Elio Vittorini 237 Uri S. Cohen: Primo Levi e Vercors 255 Sibilla Destefani: Primo Levi e Charles Baudelaire 273 Stefano Bellin: Primo Levi e Franz Kafka 287 Davide Crosara: Primo Levi e Samuel Beckett 305
Parte IV – La ricerca di sé Martina Mengoni: Primo Levi e Thomas Mann 327 Gianluca Cinelli: Primo Levi e Herman Melville 345 Mattia Cravero: Primo Levi e Ovidio 361 Marco Belpoliti: Primo Levi e Italo Calvino 381
Call for fiction on the theme “PTSD and Close Encounters in War”
Close Encounters in War Journal (www.closeencountersinwar.org) is a peer-reviewed journal aimed at studying war as a human experience, through interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary approaches ranging from the Humanities to the Social Sciences. The third issue (n. 3) of the journal will be thematic and dedicated to the experience of PTSD as a consequence of war and conflict, and titled “Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder as Aftermath of Close Encounters in War”.
In connection with the publication of Issue n. 3, the website www.closeencountersinwar.org will host a brand new section devoted to fiction. We therefore invite authors to submit unpublished short stories (between 2500 and 5000 words) and flash-fiction (up to 500 words) on the topic of conflict-related PTSD. We accept stories in English, typed in Times 12, and double-spaced. Please submit by 31st March 2020 to email@example.com. Please send doc, rtf, or odt files only. Please bear in mind that the CEIWJ is an independent project run by volunteers and that we cannot pay for your stories. Submission is free of charge and each author can submit only one story. Copyright for short stories and flash-fiction remains with the authors. We can accept multiple submissions (but please inform us immediately in case your story is accepted for publication elsewhere). Please write your full name, email address, title of the work, and word-count on the first page of your stories. Make sure that you mention in your email whether you wish to apply for the section “short stories” or “flash-fiction” when you submit.
We will publish your stories on our website in autumn 2020. Thank you for allowing us the privilege of reading your work!