From Here to Eternity Summary
James Jones

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From Here to Eternity Summary

Jones built one characteristically pungent theme into all of his writing: "Even the worst SOB in the world has suffered." Jones dedicated From Here to Eternity to the United States Army, and by that he meant the enlisted men of his time, caught up in the difficult transition from the professional Regular Army of thirty-year-men to the permanent civilian army of a major world power. Most of the pain Jones chronicles so remorselessly arises from the strictures the Army subculture imposes on the people trapped within it, usually by their own desire, demanding either their surrender or their death in resistance. The most poignant of Jones's "suffering SOB's" are those who love what kills them, a paradox that has laid Jones open to charges like Edmund Fuller's of sentimentality toward antisocial and criminal types and vindictiveness toward the socially adjusted or constructive. The often noted violence of Jones's...

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From Here to Eternity Short Guide