Academic journal article Military Review

YANK: The Army Weekly, Reporting the Greatest Generation

Academic journal article Military Review

YANK: The Army Weekly, Reporting the Greatest Generation

Article excerpt

YANK: The Army Weekly, Reporting the Greatest Generation, Barrett McGurn. Fulcrum Publishing, Golden, CO, 2004,257 pages, $18.95.

Somewhat disappointingly, this book is not a comprehensive history of the GI-published World War II magazine, Yank, nor is it a compilation of the best writing put out by its talented draftees. Rather, Yank: The Army Weekly, Reporting the Greatest Generation, could more fittingly be titled "The Life and Good Times (sometimes bad times) of Sergeant Barrett McGurn as a Yank correspondent," with occasional anecdotal forays touching on history.

Yet even without examples of actual Yank journalism or an index to places, personalities, and war stories, McGurn's reminiscences take the reader back to a military vastly removed from that of today and to memories of the era's compelling literary magazines, such as the Saturday Evening Post, Colliers, Liberty, and newspaper rotogravures. (These mass-circulation giants have long since been replaced by the "soundbite lite" magazines peeking almost entirely at politicians, entertainers, and athletes.) Pleasingly, McGurn adds examples of Yank's soldier cartoons that have become icons of an era. …

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