A poet and anthropologist explores the surprising world of war games in mock Middle Eastern villages in which the U.S. military trains. With deft lyrical attention, these documentary poems reveal the nuanced culture and violence of the war machine--alive and well within these basecamp villages, the American military, and, ultimately, the human heart. Kill Class is based on Nomi Stone's two years of fieldwork in mock Middle Eastern villages at military bases across the United States. The speaker in these poems, an anthropologist, both witnesses and participates in combat training exercises staged at Pineland, a simulated country in the woods of the American South, where actors of Middle Eastern origin are hired to theatricalize war, repetitively pretending to bargain and mourn and die. Kill Class is an arresting ethnography of American military culture, one that allows readers to circle at length through the cloverleaf interchanges where warfare nestles into even the most mundane corners of everyday life.
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