Blogging the Bookshelf

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Entries Tagged as 'Japan'

Radiation Sickness – “Hiroshima” – John Heresy

December 2nd, 2011 · No Comments · Hiroshima, History, Japan, Nuclear Weapons, Science, War, WW2

Whatever its source, the disease had some baffling quirks. Not all the patients exhibited all the main symptoms. People who suffered flash burns were protected, to a considerable extent, from radiation sickness. Those who had lain quietly for days or even hours after the bombing were much less liable to get sick than those who [...]

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The Original Child Bomb – “Hiroshima” – John Heresy

December 1st, 2011 · No Comments · Hiroshima, History, Japan, Nuclear Weapons, Science, War, WW2

About a week after the bomb dropped, a vague, incomprehensible rumour reached Hiroshima—that the city had been destroyed by the energy released when atoms were somehow split in two. The weapon was referred to in this word-of-mouth report as genshi bakudan—the root characters of which can be translated as “original child bomb.” No one understood [...]

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Black Rain – “Hiroshima” – John Heresy

December 1st, 2011 · No Comments · Hiroshima, History, Japan, Nuclear Weapons, War, WW2

It began to rain. Mrs. Nakamura kept her children under the umbrella. The drops grew abnormally large and someone shouted, “The Americans are dropping gasoline. They’re going to set fire to us!” (This alarm stemmed from one of the theories being passed through the park as to why so much of Hiroshima had burned: it [...]

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Culture in Crisis – “Hiroshima” – John Heresy

December 1st, 2011 · No Comments · Hiroshima, History, Japan, Nuclear Weapons, Uncategorized, War, WW2

To Father Kleinsorge, an Occidental, the silence in the grove by the river, where hundreds of gruesomely wounded suffered together, was one of the most dreadful and awesome phenomena of his whole experience. The hurt ones were quiet; no one wept, much less screamed in pain; no one complained; none of the many who died [...]

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Flash Burns – “Hiroshima” – John Heresy

November 30th, 2011 · No Comments · Hiroshima, History, Japan, Nuclear Weapons, War, WW2

He was the only person making his way into the city; he met hundreds and hundreds who were fleeing, and every one of them seemed to be hurt in some way. The eyebrows of some were burned off and skin hung from their faces and hands. Others, because of pain, held their arms up as [...]

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Doctors in Crisis – “Hiroshima” – John Heresy

November 30th, 2011 · No Comments · Hiroshima, History, Japan, Nuclear Weapons, War, WW2

In a city of two hundred and forty-five thousand, nearly a hundred thousand people had been killed or doomed at one blow; a hundred thousand more were hurt. At least ten thousand of the wounded made their way to the best hospital in town, which was altogether unequal to such a trampling, since it had [...]

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The Consequences of an Attack on a Civilian Population – “Hiroshima” – John Heresy

November 30th, 2011 · No Comments · Hiroshima, History, Japan, Nuclear Weapons, War, WW2

The lot of Drs. Fujii, Kanda, and Machii right after the explosion—and, as these three were typical, that of the majority of the physicians and surgeons of Hiroshima—with their offices and hospitals destroyed, their equipment scattered, their own bodies incapacitated in varying degrees, explained why so many citizens who were hurt went untended and why [...]

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Children’s Questions – “Hiroshima” – John Heresy

November 29th, 2011 · No Comments · Hiroshima, History, Japan, Nuclear Weapons, War, WW2

The children were silent, except for the five-year-old, Myeko, who kept asking questions: “Why is it night already? Why did our house fall down? What happened?” Mrs. Nakamura, who did not know what had happened (had not the all-clear sounded?), looked around and saw through the darkness that all the houses in her neighbourhood had [...]

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Introducing “Hiroshima” – John Heresy

November 29th, 2011 · No Comments · Ethics, Hiroshima, History, Japan, Journalism, Nuclear Weapons, The Media, WW2

The following note appeared in the NEW YORKER of 31 August, 1946. as an introduction to John Hersey’s article: The NEW YORKER this week devotes its entire editorial space to an article on the almost complete obliteration of a city by one atomic bomb, and what happened to the people of that city. It does [...]

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Influential Journalism – “Hiroshima” – John Heresy

November 29th, 2011 · No Comments · Hiroshima, History, Japan, Journalism, Nuclear Weapons, The Media, War, WW2

It created a first-order sensation in American journalistic history: a few hours after publication the issue was sold out. Applications poured in for permission to serialise the story in other American journals, among them the New York Herald Tribune, Washington Post, Chicago Sun, and Boston Globe. A condensed version—the cuts personally approved by Hersey—was broadcast [...]

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