The Great War had a lasting influence on literature and literary culture in Britain. Spanning the ‘brows’ of literary taste were authors writing in response to the cataclysmic violence experienced by the war generation, at both the war front and the home front. The war's shadow permeated all aspects of cultural expression; its experience found authors who, with varying degrees of success, wrote on its lasting influence to a readership that, as the decades wore on, grew increasingly afraid of another world war. One of the responses undoubtedly influenced by the war was the genre of fantasy. As one of the contributors to this volume, John Garrad, reminds us, both high modernism and epic fantasy ‘are cast from the same source’, each a response to the lingering shock of war (277). The fantastic was one of the many British cultural biproducts of the horrific violence experienced and perpetrated in France and Flanders. [excerpt]
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Isherwood, Ian. Review of Baptism of Fire: The Birth of the Modern British Fantastic in World War I by Janet Brennan Croft (ed.). Journal of Inkling Studies 9, no. 1 (2019): 77-80.
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