Fabyan Place: Two WWII GIs Fight to Survive and Overcome Racial Strife as POWS by Peter Angus
Category: Adult Fiction 18+, 350 pages
Genre: Historical Fiction
Publisher: Dottenfritz Press ; Release date: August 2021
Tour dates: November 22 to December 3
Content Rating: PG13 + M: Some use of the “F” word, some swearing, bigoted pejorative vernacular common in the 1940s, treatment attributed to Nazi captors in both a POW and Death Camp and one antagonist suicide.
ABOUT the BOOK:
Should racism prevent you fighting for your country?
Does bigotry still live even after a war has ended?
Must standing at the gates of hell in a POW camp forever change a man?
Memories of his internment as a prisoner echo as a young war veteran returns to his family and an enigmatic visitor arrives unannounced on Christmas morning.
The guest brings memories of the war, the horrors of the camps and the life-altering changes in his own psyche as his family prepares for their annual feast.
Fabyan Place is an engrossing suspenseful historical fiction novel about two mixed race young men from urban New Jersey and rural Georgia whose experiences clash in a Nazi concentration camp.
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When England helped teach the Yanks how to treat their African Americans By Peter Angus, author of Fabyan Place – 10 November 2021 (firstname.lastname@example.org )
In preparation for the largest amphibious invasion in the history of warfare on 6 June 1944, the American’s brought with them to the UK 1.4 million troops along with nearly 10 million tons of supplies. Included were their K-rations, chewing gum, cigarettes, condoms and railroad ties and tracks that would be required because the Allies were certain to destroy miles of it in France by bombing in the hours before the invasion.
Unfortunately, as the same time, the Americans also brought along their segregation and bigotry against their own Black citizens, referred to as Negros at the time, as well as their so-called ‘Jim Crow Laws’ implemented mainly to enforce racial segregation in the Southern United States. And it wasn’t only casual individual prejudice ingrained over generations – it was the official policy of the United States Armed forces.
There was harsh treatment from prejudice at every level in the US armed forces: Black officer training inequities, unequal transportation of Black troops and savage attitudes towards the Black soldier in general. It went as far as Blacks not being allowed to donate blood for White soldiers. Even blood was segregated.
Historian Graham Smith who wrote WHEN JIM CROW MET JOHN BULL: Black American Soldiers in World War II (1987), Britain stated that ‘Blacks were warmly welcomed in Britain, and the action of the white Americans in furthering a colour bar was roundly condemned.”
That said, Roy Ottley, who was among the most famous African American correspondents in the United States during the mid-20th century, working for Negro Digest pointed out that while the British “do draw racial distinctions and are not without racial prejudice, they have it in a form less blunt than US segregationist policies.” And while prejudice “did exist” against American Negros, the main origin was from what the Black troops faced from their Army superiors.
It has been suggested in a paper from Oxford Academic called Shocking Racial Attitudes: Black G.I.s in Europe that the presence of African American soldiers in the UK (David Schindler, Mark Westcott) helped as time went on since the war to actually reduce anti-minority prejudice in the UK, a result of the positive interactions which took place between the soldiers and the local population.” The paper suggests that this change “has been persistent and in locations in where more African American soldiers were posted, there is less implicit bias against black and fewer individuals professing racial prejudice.”
The authors of this study believe that the transmission of these attitudes from parents to children as the most likely explanation.
And while great strides have been made in the last half century, it is still not enough. Great change is still needed, and among the tools certainly are education and proper upbringing directed towards fostering racially neutral attitudes.
Here is the tour schedule.
Meet the Author:
Pete Angus spent his early years in New York City and environs. From there it was working and living in Vienna, Belgrade, Warsaw, Moscow, and Paris before settling in his current base, London. Fabyan Place, his first novel, is drawn from his own recollections and his extensive study of WWII military history. Pete has caught the writing bug and is currently working on a new mystery series featuring a military CID officer investigating unusual crimes in the 1940s.
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