William Gardner Smith, Last of the Conquerors

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William Gardner Smith’s debut novel

Last of the Conquerors

was published by Farrar, Straus and Company in 1948. Smith began writing the novel in 1947, on the return trip from his duty with the US occupation forces in Germany. There, he had served for eight months as a clerk-typist with the 661st Truck Company in Berlin.

Last of the Conquerors

is a courageous book that does not shy away from depicting the situation in the segregated U.S. army as Smith himself experienced it. In the novel, he skilfully combines the love story between a black American soldier and a white German woman with a celebration of human sameness and a scathing critique of racism in the US army and America as a whole. He contrasts the latter quite effectively with the warm welcome and friendly acceptance that the…

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Citation: Weik von Mossner, Alexa. "Last of the Conquerors". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 19 August 2009 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=26238, accessed 26 May 2024.]

26238 Last of the Conquerors 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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