Fragments from the Silent Generation
Two Korean War vets, striving to pick up their lives where they left off, find the future has gone on without them; while remembering “The Forgotten War”, they have to create their own future.
The time: 1959-1960, the place: Berkeley and Oakland, California. The characters: A beatnik artist and a cab driver poet learn about life and love in a changing world. Who could want for anything more? More
World War II ended with a big bang that made America King of the World, and the economy boomed. Those involved in civil defense and who profit by fear promoted the idea that Communism was the threat now, and in a scant five years, we were at war again, but the public didn’t like the idea, and the war was sold as a United Nations police action. The people were apathetic about the crisis and busy buying new cars and brand new houses in the suburbs. Times were good, but not for the soldiers fighting in Korea.
We didn’t win that war. China got into it, and we had to settle for a treaty that didn’t settle anything. That bad taste in the mouth has lasted to the present day.
Fragments from the Silent Generation is a novel taking place in 1959-1960, the setting is Berkeley and Oakland, California, and the plot involves two main characters who served in Korea. Their paths converge and cross only twice, but they both want more than the working class lives their fathers led.
Lucas is 27, he married his high school sweetheart and went off to war. He has wife and daughter and dreams of being an artist, but his wife is very unhappy. She wants a normal working class husband, a nice car, and a house in the suburbs.
Charlie is 25, lived with his parents, but he moved out at their request. He wants to write poetry, and ends up driving a cab.
The Beats were the counter culture voice of dissent at the time. They were a small group, but a lot of young people like Lucas and Charlie could identify. The Beats were the precursor to the Beatniks and Hippies of the 60’s, just as the dissatisfaction and anger over the Korean War was a precursor to the riots and protests that helped end the Vietnam War.
Lucas and Charlie lived in the quietness of their time, and although, their lives were ordinary, they followed their callings and experienced their humanity to the fullest and without regret.
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