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i think i copied this from the pynchon sub too.

I can still remember my History professor explaining WWI in terms of the trains. I am no expert at this, but according to what I remember, the trains and the possible use of them as troop transport required that protocols be planned out long in advance. Once the threat of war became imminent, the men were put on the trains. Once the trains were taking men to the front, it was virtually impossible to turn them around. Once there were armies at the front, war could not be avoided. Thus one of WWI's causes is truly mechanical in both cause and effect.


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Staff member
pynchon uses trains a lot as a method of imposing order onto the wilderness and merging the mapped representation of something with its actual form. you could say it's the map itself in mason & dixon, the train in against the day, and the v2 rocket in GR. GR also begins with a train ofc.

from against the day:
yes againat the day is the train novel of hes


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There's that source direct (?) interview where he talks about jungle as being at the front of the train and you're going back down the carriages grabbing other music as the train propels forward. I'm sure I've not imagined that, someone must've already posted it


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My Dad was a train freak. Born during the war, loved steam engines, bemoaned the state of rail infrastructure and prices.

One memory of train boredom was being taken to the old breakers yard in Barry (@craner) with my uncles and Dad, looking at rusty trains waiting to be scrapped. We took a football, thank fuck. Have all his train books, vhs and DVD’s, don’t have the heart to give them away. Even a collector would still be a loss.

The train ride from Nottingham to Glasgow is full of views, across the continent even more so. The east coast of the US from Boston southward. Well fuckin Portillo. Yes, trains, quality transport if given the means and funding. An opportunity awaits post-COVID, taking the train round the SE in recent years has been foul.