The Return of the Soldier


The Return of the Soldier is the debut novel of English novelist Rebecca West, first published in 1918. The novel recounts the return of the shell shocked Captain Chris Baldry from the trenches of The First World War from the perspective of his female cousin Jenny. The novel grapples with the soldier's return from World War I with trauma and its effects on the family, and optimistically suggests that psychoanalysis might offer a simple cure to the trauma.

Though initially reviewed by critics, literary scholars treating West's work tended to focus on her later novels and dismiss The Return of the Soldier until the end of the twentieth century and beginning of the twenty first. The novel was adapted into a film of the same name in 1982.

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