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The First World War was the first ‘total war’. Its industrial weaponry damaged millions of men, and drove whole armies underground into dangerously unhealthy trenches. Many were killed. Others suffered from massive, life-threatening injuries; wound infections such as gas gangrene and tetanus; exposure to extremes of temperature; emotional trauma; and systemic disease. Tens of thousands of women volunteered to serve as nurses to alleviate their suffering. Some were fully-trained professionals; others had minimal preparation, and served as volunteer-nurses. Their motivations were a combination of compassion, patriotism, professional pride and a desire for engagement in the ‘great enterprise’ of war. The war led to an outpouring of war-memoirs, produced mostly by soldier-writers whose works came to be seen as a ‘literary canon’ of war-writing. But nurses had offered immediate and long-term care, life-saving expertise, and comfort to the war’s wounded, and their experiences had given them a perspective on industrial warfare which was unique. Until recently, their contributions, both to the saving of lives and to our understanding of warfare have remained largely hidden from view. ‘Nurse Writers of the Great War’ examines these nurses’ memoirs and explores the insights they offer into the nature of nursing and the impact of warfare. The book combines close biographical research with textual analysis, in order to offer an understanding of both nurses’ wartime experiences and the ways in which their lives and backgrounds contributed to the style and content of their writing.

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The meaning of food to New Zealand and Australian nurses far from home in World War I, 1915–18
Pamela J. Wood and Sara Knight

2 The taste of war: The meaning of food to New Zealand and Australian nurses far from home in World War I, 1915–18 Pamela J. Wood and Sara Knight In World War I, from 1915, contingents of nurses from New Zealand and Australia served overseas, far from home. From their countries at the southernmost edge of the British Empire, they travelled across the world to the Middle East and Western Europe, lands foreign to them and often strange, intriguing and unsettling. Even Britain, still regarded as ‘home’ and the ‘mother country’ to those in the Antipodes, puzzled

in Histories of nursing practice
The re-orientation of German orthopaedics
Heather R. Perry

1 HEALING THE WAR-DISABLED: THE RE-ORIENTATION OF GERMAN ORTHOPAEDICS Its goal is to place modern orthopaedic techniques of splint-setting and fracture bandaging, treatments for joint fractures, physical therapy, and the fitting of new prostheses, etc in the service of the military. (Dr Fritz Lange, War Orthopaedics, 1915)1 The war opened up whole new areas of specialty for orthopaedics. The treatment of gunshot fractures, their traction, methods of transport, their subsequent straightening, were all challenges which placed high demands on orthopaedic

in Recycling the disabled
Christine E. Hallett

7 American young women at war Introduction: American women at war American women participated in the First World War long before their nation entered the conflict. Wealthy and independent women who could afford to travel joined volunteer units or offered their services independently to the Committees of the French and Belgian Red Cross.1 Their efforts were rewarded by admission into some of the most dramatic – and horrific – scenarios of the war. Nothing could have prepared them for the seriousness of the wounds they encountered. Industrial warfare was not a

in Nurse Writers of the Great War
Clement Masakure

Introduction One of the central features of the 1970s decade was the liberation war, which started in earnest in 1972 and culminated with the Lancaster House Conference of 1979 that led to majority rule and independence in 1980. The war pitted the mainly white dominated Rhodesian government and the black dominated nationalists against each other. The war that resulted from the struggle between the nationalists and the minority government had a significant effect not only on race relations in Rhodesia. Thus, taking hospitals as a microcosm of the society, one

in African nurses and everyday work in twentieth-century Zimbabwe
Michael Robinson

Introduction The UK's available bed space for the medical treatment of wounded servicemen amounted to 365,000 by the cessation of the First World War. Thirty-six affiliated auxiliary hospitals catered for war-related ailments in Ireland. 1 Voluntary charities and philanthropists ran numerous facilities, there was an expansion of existing military hospitals, building of new military hospitals, and the creation of military hospitals and wards within public institutions such as

in Shell-shocked British Army veterans in Ireland, 1918–39
Ian Atherton

Battlefields, burials and the English Civil Wars Chapter 1 Battlefields, burials and the English Civil Wars Ian Atherton T he idea that ‘military care’ extends beyond death to the treatment of the war dead is not new, though the forms it has taken have varied over time. Roger Boyle’s 1677 military treatise advised a victorious general to look after the wounded and prisoners, and see ‘his Dead honourably buried’. Similar ideas can be found in a number of sixteenth-century military manuals, and can be traced back at least as far as the Graeco-Roman world.1

in Battle-scarred
The moron as an enemy force
Gerald V. O’Brien

4 THE WAR AND NATURAL CATASTROPHE METAPHORS: THE MORON AS AN ENEMY FORCE Congenitally incapable of adjusting themselves to an advanced social order, the degenerate inevitably become its enemies – particularly those ‘high-­grade defectives’ who are the natural fomenters of social unrest.1 ‘Undesirable’ community groups, especially those which can be framed as potentially destructive to society at large, are often described through the employment of military or natural catastrophe metaphors. In such cases, the group is put forth as a primary and imminent threat

in Framing the moron
Christine E. Hallett

6 The war nurse as free agent Introduction: the rewards of professional nursing In the second decade of the twentieth century, the nursing professions in both Britain and the USA had attained a level of recognition that permitted their members considerable personal and professional autonomy. During training their lives were circumscribed by the patriarchal hierarchies of early-twentieth-century hospital life; but, once they had attained the level of ‘senior probationer’, nurses exercised high levels of responsibility – often running wards and supervising junior

in Nurse Writers of the Great War
Richard Jones

Gerard’s Herball and the treatment of war-wounds Chapter 6 Gerard’s Herball and the treatment of war-wounds and contagion during the English Civil War Richard Jones O n 14 September 1644, Lieutenant-Colonel Thomas Johnson, a royalist field officer at Basing House, sustained a gunshot to his shoulder while coming to the aid of Captain Fletcher’s musketeers. Charged with protecting carts bringing provisions from the town to the besieged garrison, Fletcher’s men had been routed by a parliamentarian force of mounted and foot soldiers. Johnson’s rearguard action

in Battle-scarred