Briefing For A Descent Into Hell – Custom Essays
Senate “doves” included George McGovern (D-South Dakota), Frank Church (D-Idaho), Eugene McCarthy (D-Minnesota), John Sherman Cooper (R-Kentucky), Mark Hatfield (R-Oregon), Clifford Case (R-New Jersey), Gaylord Nelson (D-Wisconsin), Edward Kennedy (D-Massachusetts), Edmund Muskie (D-Maine), Alan Cranston (D-California), Al Gore Sr. (D-Tennessee), Joseph Clark (D-Pennsylvania), Harold Hughes (D-Iowa), Charles Goodell (R-New York), and Stephen Young (D-Ohio), with moderate support from Mike Mansfield (D-Montana), J. William Fulbright (D-Arkansas), and George Aiken (R-Vermont). The two foremost critics of the war in earlier years, Wayne Morse (D-Oregon) and Ernest Gruening (D-Alaska), were defeated in the November 1968 Congressional elections. Goodell was defeated in 1970.
Is briefing for a descent into hell essay interlaced in prophecy.
The American massacre of civilians at My Lai on March 16, 1968, was part of the U.S. counteroffensive following Tet. The area in which the My Lai village was located was labeled “Pinkville” and a U.S. unit known as Charlie company – led by Captain Ernest Medina, with 2nd Lt. William Calley commanding the First Platoon – treated it as a free-fire zone, killing some 500 unarmed men, women, children, and infants. A number of women were raped as well. Not all soldiers participated in the murders; one broke down and cried; another shot animals instead. Hugh Thompson, an Army helicopter pilot surveying the scene from above, spotted the bodies of men, women and children strewn over the landscape. Realizing that a massacre was taking place, he landed his chopper and rescued ten civilians while ordering his crew chief to shoot any American soldiers who opened fire on the civilians. On the same day, another U.S. unit, Bravo company, murdered some 90 civilians in the village of My Khe, two kilometers to the east. These massacres were not acknowledged by military authorities at the time. The task force commander overseeing operations wrote in his after-action report that the day’s maneuvers were “well planned, well-executed, and successful.”
Lessing’s influences are diverse. Throughout her career as a writer, she has espoused various philosophic allegiances, and, not surprisingly, her fiction reflects these commitments. Retreat to Innocence (1956) is an explicitly pro-Marxist work, but since her defection from the Communist party, she has disowned that novel. The Golden Notebook reflects a Jungian interest, partly in the nature of the psychoanalyst whom Lessing’s protagonist in that novel consults. Briefing for a Descent into Hell (1971), the novel published immediately after The Golden Notebook and the last two parts of the Children of Violence series, shows a distinct correlation to and dependence upon the work of psychiatrist R. D. Laing.
In Briefing for a Descent into Hell ..
I recall when we studied Doris Lessing's Briefing for a Descent into Hell, that she fashioned it in part after a Sufi teaching tale. The idea is to disrupt the surface narrative, so that the reader cannot immerse themselves in it, and as such, they must seek out the deeper meanings of the text. I'm not sure if that qualifies as metafiction, but it certainly was jarring to move from a man recovering his memory in hospital to a castaway story to a sci-fi story and like so.