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War Torn: Stories of War from the Women Reporters Who Covered Vietnam Hardcover – August 20, 2002


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 291 pages
  • Publisher: Random House; 1st edition (August 20, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375506284
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375506284
  • Product Dimensions: 9.6 x 6.4 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #733,013 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Often only hours before you took that first sip of ricard or your martini... you had been watching a medic give up on a kid of eighteen or nineteen and flip a cold poncho over his face. Often you could hear the artillery of a battle across the Saigon River. So Kate Webb, a former UPI correspondent, recalls her days as a reporter in Vietnam, moving back and forth between the devastation of the field and the decadent and chaotic nightlife of Saigon. Her story is part of War Torn: Stories of War from the Women Reporters Who Covered Vietnam, written by former correspondents including Denby Fawcett, Jurate Kazickas and UPI's Webb and Tracy Wood. The book collects nine reporters' memoirs that recall the period of 1966 1975, when women's reportage, as Gloria Emerson notes in her introduction, was much rarer than today.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Women correspondents in Vietnam were a rarity and frequently discouraged by the military as well as by paternalistic editors who resisted giving them combat assignments. But the nine women reporters whose harrowing war stories are recounted here e.g., Bartimus (Associated Press), Edie Lederer (Associated Press), Anne Merrick (ABC-TV), Laura Palmer (ABC and NBC Radio), and more were determined to go to Vietnam to cover the biggest story of their generation. In the course of their work, one was captured and imprisoned by the enemy and two others were seriously injured. For each woman Vietnam was a life-changing event, her "phantom limb," as Bartimus calls it. These powerful stories of sex, drugs, fear, adventure, horror, and pathos, as well as "the unabashed love" that these reporters observed the men on the battlefield expressing to one another, offer a new perspective on the war and warfare journalism that should be in demand in all public and academic libraries. Highly recommended. Faye Powell, Portland State Univ. Lib., OR
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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They way these women express their adventures, insights, and emotions is absolutely glorious.
Marilyn Engelke
My thanks to the authors for putting such a wonderful piece of writing and important part of history down on paper.
Brenden Holden
I highly recommend this book to anyone who has an interest in the Vietnam War or the modern history of journalism.
P. R. Newman

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Marilyn Engelke on September 1, 2002
Format: Hardcover
" Having been born in the early forties, Vietnam was MY war. Unlike the women of WAR TORN, I busied myself with raising a family in the good, old, safe & sound USA. I cannot say enough about the impact this book had on me. These selfless, courageous, determined correspondents took me on a tour of a Vietnam that I never knew existed. Reading WAR TORN was truly an educational, eye-opening experience for me. They way these women express their adventures, insights, and emotions is absolutely glorious. This is a must read for people of all ages."
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By jsdunada on September 1, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I enjoyed this book because, although I was fairly young during the Vietnam War, it's events shaped my generation....The book is interesting because of the different experiences & writing styles of the nine authors. And, yes, all of the authors have definite opinions as to the role of the USA there.
Although it is short & easy to read, I found it taught me a number of things about the people involved; the military, journalists and civilians caught in that mayhem.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 20, 2002
Format: Hardcover
The stories in War Torn are riveting and capture the will and determination of women journalists to have equal access to cover the war. But they also bring Saigon and Vietnam in the 60s and 70 alive to anyone too young to remember. I applaud these women for making the Vietnam war accessible to a generation who grew up after the war.
War Torn leave the reader happy and sad but thoroughly enchanted. For anyone who is a history buff, a traveler planning to visit Vietnam or simply a lover of great tales, I highly recommend this book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Brenden Holden on October 4, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I don't know much about Vietnam, but I was drawn to the book by the sad and thoughtful face on the cover. My highest praise to these women. They brought the Vietnam war alive to someone who was not even born at its conclusion. The stories are beautiful, sad, funny and touching. My thanks to the authors for putting such a wonderful piece of writing and important part of history down on paper.
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Format: Hardcover
This book is a collection of ten first-person essays from women who worked as correspondents during the Vietnam War. Their tenures range from the beginning years of the war to the fall of Saigon and release of POWs. Some women were seasoned journalists before gaining their assignments (and most had to wrest their jobs from editors reluctant to send women to war) while others learned their craft on the ground.

Through these essays, you'll experience the war in ways you probably could not from male correspondents. The war correspondent's job is a level playing field -- no one pampered these women or let them off lightly. They were there to do a job and they hustled. But because they were women, they might have had certain advantages: they were sympathetic figures to whom people were willing to open their hearts and spill their stories.

War wasn't the only subject matter for these correspondents. As reporters, they became fascinated by the country, saw the beauty in it even while that beauty was being destroyed. They turned their notepads and their cameras on the people of Vietnam, reporting the war from the most intimate level.

Even more striking in each of these essays is the insight these women gained about themselves. They are eloquent in parsing how the war changed them, both for the better and for worse. Many of them returned to Vietnam decades later and basked in this country that many experienced as a second home during a turbulent time. Life was intense and friendships deep; many found love, both fleeting and lifelong.

In these essays, you'll be immersed in the lives of these fascinating women. And just for the record, here are their names: Gloria Emerson, Denby Fawcett, Ann Bryan Mariano, Kate Webb, Anne Morrissy Merick, Jurate Kazickas, Edith Lederer, Tad Bartimus, Tracy Wood and Laura Palmer.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Although, I didn't see any women combat reporters when I was in Pakistan or Afghanistan, it was certainly apparent that it was in Vietnam that they reached a greater level of reporting. I was a personal fan of Kate Webb, and Dickie Chappell personally, but really enjoyed all the other women reporters stories that I grew up in High School reading about in the papers and magazines. All military historians and journalists who want to ready good copy of some of the greatest women combat journalists of the Vietnam era should get a copy of this book.
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By kkollwitz on October 13, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Haunting, compelling, and elegaic memoirs comment not only on the war from the particular worldview of women; but also on the nature of youth in its energy, innocence and brevity; how long the rest of life can be; and loss. Never read anything else like it.
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