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Goodbye to All That and Other Great War Writings

Robert Graves

Edited by Steven Trout

Goodbye to All That and Other Great War Writings
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Hardback
ISBN: 978 1 857546 65 1
Categories: 20th Century, British, War writings
Imprint: Carcanet Fiction
Published: December 2007
216 x 135 x 135 mm
404 pages
Publisher: Carcanet Press
  • Description
  • Author
  • Contents
  • Reviews
  • This volume brings together all three of Robert Graves's most significant prose writings on the meaning of the Great War: the original 1929 edition of Good-bye to All That, the essay 'A Postscript to Good-bye to All That' (1930), and the play But It Still Goes On (1930). These last two works, which have been long out of print, provide an invaluable context for Graves's classic autobiography. The 'Postscript', Graves's reflections on the nature of personal literature written about the Great War, is a fascinating complement to Good-bye to All That, illuminating Graves's own stance in his war memoir. But It Still Goes On, a play too controversial to be staged in the 1930s, explores the cultural and emotional wasteland of postwar England. Steven Trout's detailed introduction places all three works within their cultural and biographical context and, in particular, explores the complexities of the truth claims and dark humour in Graves's account of his experiences on the Western Front.

    This is the only edition of Graves's work to present the original 1929 text of Good-bye to All That alongside 'A Postscript' and But It Still Goes On, making available crucial texts for any Graves scholar or student of First World War literature.
    Introduction by Steven Trout ix

    Works Cited xxxii



    GOOD-BYE TO ALL THAT

    Chapter I 1

    Chapter II 12

    Chapter III 19

    Chapter IV 23

    Chapter V 28

    Chapter VI 33

    Chapter VII 37

    Chapter VIII 42

    Chapter IX 52

    Chapter X 57

    Chapter XI 68

    Chapter XII 74

    Chapter XIII 85

    Chapter XIV 94

    Chapter XV 109

    Chapter XVI 127

    Chapter XVII 138

    Chapter XVIII 146

    Chapter XIX 152

    Chapter XX 157

    Chapter XXI 170

    Chapter XXII 179

    Chapter XXIII 185

    Chapter XXIV 192

    Chapter XXV 201

    Chapter XXVI 211

    Chapter XXVII 220

    Chapter XXVIII 228

    Chapter XXIX 238

    Chapter XXX 247

    Chapter XXXI 253

    Chapter XXXII 260

    Dedicatory Epilogue to Laura Riding 273

    POSTSCRIPT TO GOOD-BYE TO ALL THAT

    BUT IT STILL GOES ON: A PLAY IN THREE ACTS

    Act I 307

    Act II 332

    Act III 354

    List of Illustrations to Good-bye to All That

    Robert Graves,1929 xxxiv

    Cuinchy brick-stacks seen from a British trench on the Givenchy canal-bank. The white placarded brick-stack is in the British support line; the ones beyond are held by the Germans. The village of Auchy is seen in the distance.

    Trench map showing the Cambrin–Cuinchy–Vermelles trench sector in the summer of 1915. Each square-side measures 500 yards and is ticked off into 50-yard units. Only the German trench-system is shown in detail; a broken pencil-line marks the approximate course of the British front trench. The mine-craters appear as stars in No Man’s Land. The brick-stacks in the German line appear as minute squares; those held by the British are not marked. The intended line of advance of the 19th Brigade on September 25th is shown in pencil on this map, which is the one that I carried on that day.

    Maps

    Somme Trench Map – TheFricourt Sector, 1916. This map fits against the map on page 159
    Somme Trench Map – MametzWood and High Wood, 1916. This map fits against the map on page 149

    Robert Graves, from a pastel by Eric Kennington.

    Various Records, mostly self-explanatory. The Court of Enquiry mentioned in the bottom left-hand message was to decide whether the wound of a man in the Public Schools Battalion – a rifle shot through his foot – was self-inflicted or accidental. It was self-inflicted. B. Echelon meant the part of the battalion not in the trenches. Idol was the code-name for the Second Battalion of the Royal Welch Fusiliers. The notebook leaf is the end of my 1915 diary only three weeks after I began it; I used my letters home as a diary after that. The message about Sergeant Varcoe was from Captain Samsom shortly before his death; I was temporarily attached to his company.

    1929, The Second Battalion the Royal Welch Fusiliers back to pre-war soldiering. The regimental Royal goat, the regimental goat-major and the regimental pioneers (wearing white leather aprons and gauntlets – a special regimental privilege) on church parade at Wiesbaden on the Rhine. The band follows, regimentally. The goat has a regimental number and draws rations like a private soldier, ‘some speak of Alexander, and some of Hercules…’







    Robert Graves
    Robert Graves (1895-1985), poet, classical scholar, novelist, and critic, was one of the greatest writers of the 20th Century. Athough he produced over 100 books he is perhaps best known for the novel I, Claudius (1934), The White Goddess (1948) and Greek Myths (1955). Robert Graves was born in Wimbledon, South ... read more
    Praise for Robert Graves  'There is eloquence, wit and a formal shapeliness in abundance from first to last.'
    Michael Glover, Financial Times 10/02/01
     'While poetry schools came and went, Graves went on writing until his death in 1985, in an elegant, classically inspired style.'
    Andrew Crumey, Scotland on Sunday 07/01/01
     'No one else offers his precise combination of eroticism, nightmare and epigram.'
    Sean O'Brien, The Guardian 13/01/01
     'Graves experiences in the trenches of the First World War are most vivid and moving.'
    Robert Nye, Scotsman on Sunday, 16/12/00
     'In his attitude to verse he remained a Georgian, an eccentric one.'
    Eric Hester, Catholic Times 20/02/00
     'Graves enshrines his archetypal motifs of obsessive love in legendary contexts from which the contemporary world is resolutely excluded.'
    Mark Ford, The London Review of Books
     'One of the twentieth century's major writers.'
    Richard Foster, Yorkshire Evening Press
     Graves is a poet and a visionary in his prose writings, always stimulating and frequently enlightening.
    Patrick Reilly, The Herald
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