Magazine article Psychology Today

Q & A With. Phil Klay

Magazine article Psychology Today

Q & A With. Phil Klay

Article excerpt

AN EX-MARINESKETCHESTHE FACES OFA DECADE-DEFININGWAR

WHERE TO BEGIN an honest account of the Iraq War and the lives It shaped? In Redeployment, former Marine Corps public affairs officer Phil Klay digs into the conflict from a dozen fictional perspectives. PTspoke with Klay about whatthese voices, Inspired by those of real veterans, have to tell us. -MattHuston

Has America's image of veterans evolved over the past decade?

There are probably two main tropes that you see: the hero-the awe-inspiring Navy SEAL-and the traumatized soldier thrust into warand destroyed by It.Goingtowarisarare experience in American culture, so it's easy for simple notions to gain a lot of weight. The reality Is always more complex.

Was working on this book therapeutic?

Some things are closer to my personal experience than others-those were difficulttowrite. It'svery strange getting out of the military, when you've Lived in Iraq, and peopleyou knoware going overseas again and again. Some of them are getting injured. So, no, it's nottherapeutic.Alot of the stuff is upsetting. It also Involved thinking about the policies that were enacted and what wentwrong. …

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