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Great War Prostheses in American Literature and Culture
Oxford University Press
George C. Connor Professor of American Literature Aaron Shaheen published his second book, Great War Prostheses in American Literature, in September.
Shaheen’s book addresses how prosthetic devices were designed, promoted and depicted in America in the years during and after World War I. The modern technology that mechanized the so-called Great Wa—tanks, flamethrowers and poison gas, among others—also was the cause of injuries suffered by returning soldiers. Missing limbs were common and the new technology was promoted as both a remedy and spiritual extension of the physical body.
Through recent literary and disability studies, the book explores the spiritual promise of prosthetics and their lasting effects—physical, emotional, spiritual—on the amputees.