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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

Common Read

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Common Read 2012-2013

The Unforgiving Minute by Craig M Mullaney

The Unforgiving Minute, according to its author’s website, is the extraordinary story of one soldier’s singular education. From a hilarious plebe’s-eye view of the author’s West Point experience to the demanding leadership crucible of Ranger School’s swamps and mountains, to a two-year whirlwind of scintillating debate, pub crawls, and romance at Oxford, Mullaney’s winding path to the battlegrounds of Afghanistan was unique and remarkable. The memoir examines Mullaney’s self- doubt and his struggle to deal with being faced with mortality at such a young age.

Despite all his preparation, the author’s website continues, the hardest questions remained. When the call came to lead his platoon into battle and earn his soldiers’ salutes, would he be ready? Was his education sufficient for the unforgiving minutes he’d face? A fascinating account of an Army captain’s unusual path through some of the most legendary seats of learning straight into a brutal fight with Al Qaeda in Afghanistan, The Unforgiving Minute is, above all, an unforgettable portrait of a young soldier grappling with the weight of his hard-earned knowledge while coming to grips with becoming a man.

Campus Events

September 4, 2012, in the Centennial Student Union Ballroom, communications studies professor Dave Engen interviewed Mullaney, in front of hundreds of stu­dents, staff and community members, putting a major emphasis on Mullaney’s education.