Description   |   Syllabus

Wars, Coups and Revolutions: Political Violence and How to Write About It
UC-Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism
Fall 1998

Mark Danner 
 Description: We will have a look at violent political change. We will seek to identify patterns that recur in revolutions and in coups d'etat. We will concentrate on learning to extract a clear narrative from complicated and overlapping political events. We will consider, among others, the Salvadoran civil war of the 1970's and '80's; the Haitian coup d'etat of 1986, the anti-Aristide coup of 1991 and the American occupation of 1994; and the wars of the Yugoslav succession of 1991 to 1998. We will read the work, among others, of Malaparte, Luttwak, Herr, Vulliamy, Orwell, Brinton, Stendhal. Emphasis will be on "long- form" reporting. Frequent writing, much of it conducted in class. Final paper.

*Preliminaries: The Spanish Civil War* 
* George Orwell, Homage to Catalonia (HBJ) 
* George Orwell, "Politics and the English Language" in Selected Essays (HBJ) 
* Gerald Brenan, The Spanish Labyrinth (Cambridge) 
* V.S. Naipaul, "The Return of Eva Peron" 
 The Coup d'Etat*
* Edward Luttwak, Coup d'Etat: A Practical Handbook (Harvard) 
* Bruce W. Farcau, The Coup: Tactics and the Seizure of Power (Praeger) 
* Curzio Malaparte, The Technique of the Coup d'Etat 
* Benedict Anderson, A Preliminary Account of the Indonesian Coup of 1965 (Cornell) 
* Max Lane, The Year of Living Dangerously 
* Sudhir Kakar, Colors of Violence (Chicago) 
* Mark Danner, "Beyond the Mountains: Haiti & the Legacy of Duvalier," The New Yorker (three parts) 
* Mark Danner, "Aristide: The Fall of the Prophet," New York Review of Books (three parts) 
* Amy Wilentz, The Rainy Season (Simon & Schuster) 
* Henri-Rolph Troulliot, Silencing the Past (Beacon) 
* Henri-Rolph Troulliot, State and Nation in Haiti (Johns Hopkins)  

*Ways of War* 
* Xenophon, Anabasis (The Persian Expedition) (Penguin) 
* T.S. Eliot, Anabase (translation of St. John Perse) 
* Victor Davis Hanson, The Western Way of War (Oxford) 
* Count Philippe de Segur, Napoleon's Russian Campaign (Time) 
* Stendhal, Charterhouse of Parma (Waterloo Opening) 
* Tolstoy, Anna Karenina (Borodino) 
* Tolstoy, War & Peace (Scythian Warfare Chapter) 
* Stephen Crane, Red Badge of Courage 
* John Hersey, Hiroshima, in American Library, War Reporting 

*Guerrillas and Counterinsurgency to Vietnam* 
* Walter Laqueur (ed.), The Guerrilla Reader (Wildwood House, London) 
* Che Guevera, Guerrilla Warfare (Scholarly Resources Inc.) 
* Henry Butterfield Ryan, The Fall of Che Guevara (Oxford) 
* Lt Col. Dave Grossman, On Killing (Little, Brown) 
* Lt. Gen Harold G. Moore (ret.), We Were Soldiers Once... And Young (Harper) 
* Neal Sheehan, A Bright Shining Lie (Battle of An Bac) 

*Central America* 
* William Stanley, The Protection Racket State: Elite Politics, Military Extortion and Civil War in El Salvador (Temple University Press) 
* Mark Danner, The Massacre at El Mozote (Vintage) 
* Mark Pedelty, War Stories: The Culture of Foreign Correspondents (Routledge) 
* Richard Sobel (ed.), Public Opinion in US Foreign Policy: The Controversy Over Contra Aid (Rowman & Littlefield) 
* Corradi et al, Fear at the Edge: State Terror and Resistance in Lat Amer (Cal) Africa and Genocide 
* John Stockwell, In Search of Enemies (Norton) 
* William Finnegan, A Complicated War (California) 
* Fergal Keane, Season of Blood (Penguin) 
* Gerard Prunier, The Rwanda Crisis (Columbia) 
* Alain Destexhe, Rwanda and Genocide in the Twentieth Century (New York U) 

*The United Nations and Rwanda, 1993-1996 (United Nations)* 
* Henry Morgenthau, Ambassador Morgenthau's Journal 
* Brenda K. Uekert, Rivers of Blood: A Comparative Study of Government Massacres (Praeger) 
* Roy Gutman, A Witness to Genocide (Macmillan) 
* Ed Vulliamy, Seasons in Hell (St Martins) 
* Chuck Sudetic, Blood and Vengeance (Norton) 
* Honig and Both, Srebrenica: Record of a War Crime (Penguin) 
* Mark Danner, "Bosnia: The Turning Point" and "Bosnia: The Betrayal," New York Review of Books

© 2022 Mark Danner