Under Fire

Under Fire

Written by:
Introduction by: J. Winter
Translated by:

  • Paperback
  • ISBN 9780143039044
  • 352 Pages
  • Penguin Classics
  • Adult


Based on his own experience of the Great War, Henri Barbusse’s novel is a powerful account of one of the greatest horrors mankind has inflicted on itself.

For the group of ordinary men in the French Sixth Battalion, thrown together from all over France and longing for home, war is simply a matter of survival, lightened only by the arrival of their rations or a glimpse of a pretty girl or a brief reprieve in the hospital. Reminiscent of classics like Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms and Remarque’s All Quiet on the Western Front, Under Fire (originally published in French as La Feu) vividly evokes life in the trenches: the mud, stench, and monotony of waiting while constantly fearing for one’s life in an infernal and seemingly eternal battlefield.

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
Under Fire

Under Fire

Written by: Henri Barbusse, Introduction by: J. Winter, Translated by: Robin Buss


One of the most influential of all war novels, Henri BarbusseÆs La Feu appeared in 1916à and sold 200,000 copies in French. (History Today)

Table of Contents

Under FireIntroduction
Translator’s Note

Under Fire
1. The Vision
2. In the Ground
3. The Descent
4. Volpatte and Fouillade
5. Sanctuary
6. Habits
7. Embarkation
8. Leave
9. Mighty Anger
10. Argoval
11. The Dog
12. The Doorway
13. Swearwords
14. Kit
15. The Egg
16. Idyll
17. The Sap
18. The Matches
19. Bombardment
20. Fire
21. The First-Aid Post
22. The Jaunt
23. The Fatigue
24. Dawn