Under Fire

Under Fire

Paperback Penguin Classics Language: English / French

By (author) Henri Barbusse, Translated by Robin Buss, Introduction by Professor Jay Winter

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  • Publisher: Penguin Books
  • Format: Paperback | 318 pages
  • Language: English / French
  • Dimensions: 127mm x 196mm x 20mm | 249g
  • Publication date: 31 August 2004
  • Publication City/Country: New York, NY
  • ISBN 10: 0143039040
  • ISBN 13: 9780143039044
  • Sales rank: 160,965

Product description

Based on his own experience of the Great War, Henri Barbusse's novel is a powerful account of one of the greatest horrors mankind has inflicted on itself. For the group of ordinary men in the French Sixth Battalion, thrown together from all over France and longing for home, war is simply a matter of survival, lightened only by the arrival of their rations or a glimpse of a pretty girl or a brief reprieve in the hospital. Reminiscent of classics like Hemingway's "A Farewell to Arms" and Remarque's "All Quiet on the Western Front," "Under Fire" (originally published in French as "La Feu") vividly evokes life in the trenches: the mud, stench, and monotony of waiting while constantly fearing for one's life in an infernal and seemingly eternal battlefield.

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Author information

Henri Barbusse (1873-1935) was a volunteer who fought in World War I, a noted pacifist, and later a communist. His novels include Clarte and The Knife Between the Teeth. Robin Buss is a writer and translator who works for the"Independent on Sunday" and as television critic for The Times Educational Supplement. He studied at the University of Paris, where he took a degree and a doctorate in French literature. He is part-author of the article 'French Literature' in Encyclopaedia Britannica and has published critical studies of works by Vigny and Cocteau, and three books on European cinema, The French Through Their Films (1988), Italian Films (1989) and French Film Noir (1994). He has also translated a number of volumes for Penguin Classics.

Review quote

One of the most influential of all war novels, Henri BarbusseAEs "La Feu" appeared in 1916a and sold 200,000 copies in French. ("History Today")