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Reporting Vietnam: American Journalism 1959-1975 (Library of America) Paperback

ISBN-13: 978-1883011901 ISBN-10: 1883011906 Edition: 1ST

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Product Details

  • Series: Library of America
  • Paperback: 830 pages
  • Publisher: Library of America; 1ST edition (June 5, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1883011906
  • ISBN-13: 978-1883011901
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.4 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #690,500 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Can't wait to reread it....
Frank Beckendorf
That means my generation of draft-aged males... lived with the reality of War throughout their adolescence.
Philip W. Henry
This book comprises written reports, articles, personal memories and even letters about and from Vietnam.
Joerg Colberg

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Author Bill Peschel on September 3, 2000
Format: Paperback
Reading this collection of Vietnam-era reportage from The Library of America is a stark reminder of the lasting power of the written word. Has it really been nearly a quarter-century since the black and white images of the helicopters taking off from the roof of the American Embassy faded from our television screens? Grenada, Panama, Iraq -- three wars and God knows how many humanitarian efforts (Somalia, Yugoslavia, did I miss any?)
Yet, the power of memory is such that it doesn't take much to bring it all back. Dipping into these compilations of writings about Vietnam -- the original reportage and memoirs in the Library of America volumes and the best of everything else in "The Vietnam Reader" -- shards of long-forgotten memories were struck just by reading the names of towns and villages. Khe Sahn, Haiphong: The words sound so completely alien, as if they had been coined by H.P. Lovecraft. They trigger memories of tracing the S-curve of the countries on maps in the newspapers, seeing the photographs in Life magazine -- for me, the 1960s will always be remembered as a series of black and white freeze-frames from the magazines, with color reserved only for the more silly stories found in the back of the book -- and hearing them recited on TV in the stentorian tones of Walter Cronkitethe who would recite the weekly casualty figures, printedon screen before the national flags, like baseball scores, while the family ate our meat loaf and mashed potatoes and waited for Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom to come on at 7.
Time has passed and in this media-drenched age, so much history has been created, screened and absorbed over the past quarter-century.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Philip W. Henry on June 7, 2006
Format: Paperback
THE VIETNAM WAR AND THE MEDIA

I am a Vietnam Veteran, a college graduate of the Vietnam Era, and a professional journalist. That should establish either some kind of credibility or culpability. The Vietnam War began when I was l7 years old, and ended when I was 30. That means my generation of draft-aged males... lived with the reality of War throughout their adolescence. I went to college in the '60s and, like most of my classmates, lived under the shadow of Vietnam for my entire college career.. Flunk out...you get Drafted. (that happened to a friend of mine at Yale. He partied too heartily and ended up as a grunt in the Mekong Delta.) As the War escalated, so did the dissent and the polarization of the country.

In l968, the following events occurred:
* The Tet Offensive;
* the Democratic National Convention in Chicago with the arrest of the Chicago Seven;
* The Mexico City Olympics black power protests;
* The assassinations of Martin Luther King and RFK;
* student demonstrations at Berkeley, Columbia, and Paris;
* And the increse in the Force Level in Vietnam approached 500,000.

That makes 1968 the most significant year in my life. That was also the year after I graduated from College, and, lacking plans for graduate school, enlisted in the Army (not out of patriotism but pragmatism: I made a deal with the devil--- I'd volunteer for three years as a Broadcast Specialist, and the Army would keep me out of The Killing Zone. When I got to Saigon, I worked for Armed Forces Radio and TV: reading news they wanted me to read (like Robin Williams' character Adrian Kronauer in "Good Morning Vietnam.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By ManicPanic on December 19, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is exactly the type of book you want to read about Vietnam - in the words of those who were there, whether soldier or reporter. It contains articles written by the media and excerpts from soldiers memoirs in chronological order from the start of the war until the fall of Saigon. (FYI - There is little here from a directly Vietnamese point of view, though there are some who write very sympathetically of their plight.)

This tome (it's over 800 pages of densely packed information and narration, but doled out in 5-10 page excerpts which make great reading) covers everything from the first days of aerial bombing (letters home from one of the first pilots over there) to the African-American experience in Vietnam, to the desolation of those involved when Saigon fell.

Because this is a compilation of actual stories from the Vietnam Conflict you could use it's wealth of information (and sources) to build a case for any position or point of view. It would be an excellent source for research on the Vietnam War, steeped with original quotes and overflowing with the genuine feelings and experiences of those who were there.

Highly Recommended.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Zendicant Penguin on July 8, 2003
Format: Paperback
I say semi-definitive reportage because this brilliant compilation of news articles, magazine essays and excerpts from books is the distilled nectar from the two volume hardbound series issued earlier. While I haven't read the above-mentioned 2 volumes, I have read enough other Vietnam material to authoritatively state that this book does a more than adequate, dare I say brilliant, job of crystallizing the plethora of intertwined issues that encompassed the Vietnam war and the world stage upon which it unfolded. This book also offers some very unpleasant lessons to those of us who found our way to it due to the recent round of warfare commenced by the Bush Administration in order to save the world from Communism, ummm, I mean Terrorism.
For better or worse all of the other books I've read on the Vietnam war fall into two categories: The "Minute History of ..." and the "My personal Hell in ...." The problem with the former is that most people either don't have the patience or the desire to wade through all of the excrutiating details that went into the Vietnam war, and since any good history necessarily contains at least a majority of such unsavory bits, all of the 'good' histories of Vietnam rarely, I suspect, get finished. Plus, even when well-done the story is told with such detachment that the reader's mind often wanders while his eyes glide over the text. The problem with the latter style of narrative is that the events contained within are of such a narrow scope that no matter how powerful and well-written (see 'Rumor of a War' by Caputo, and 'A Boy's War' by Wolf, for instance), they are mere pinhole theatre. 'Reporting Vietnam' is unique, enlightening and vital because of the following factors.
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