Open Access (free)
Bloomsbury attitudes to the Great War
Author: Jonathan Atkin

The Great War still haunts us. This book draws together examples of the ‘aesthetic pacifism’ practised during the Great War by such celebrated individuals as Virginia Woolf, Siegfried Sassoon and Bertrand Russell. It also tells the stories of those less well known who shared the attitudes of the Bloomsbury Group when it came to facing the first ‘total war’. The five-year research for this study gathered evidence from all the major archives in Great Britain and abroad in order to paint a complete picture of this unique form of anti-war expression. The narrative begins with the Great War's effect on philosopher-pacifist Bertrand Russell and Cambridge University.

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.

Open Access (free)
Jonathan Atkin

4 Writers at war Bertrand Russell was just one man largely thinking and acting alone – and therein rests his reputation. But to what extent – whether in private or public – did similar anti-war concerns to those of Russell and the Bloomsbury circle express themselves among the intelligentsia? The bulk of the evidence derives from the letters that sped back and forth between contemporary writers, artists and thinkers, during a time of unexpected conflict – a conflict that provoked much doubt and debate. In common with Bertrand Russell, E.M. Forster believed the

in A war of individuals
Open Access (free)
Jonathan Atkin

6 Women and the war The Great War, most people would have agreed at the time, was a male creation. Politicians, statesmen and kings bred it and soldiers fought and fed it. Thus far, this study has regarded those women within Bloomsbury whose aesthetic reactions to the conflict provide such a good starting point when examining the war in this context. What of other women, existing independently from that hot-house of creativity, but who felt similarly? Due to their status in society as a whole, women necessarily operated within a different cultural milieu to

in A war of individuals
Jonathan Atkin

3 Academics at war – Bertrand Russell and Cambridge The University and the outbreak of war The thoughts and actions of the Cambridge mathematician and philosopher Bertrand Russell are central to this book. Russell was able to articulate with extraordinary clarity a fully humanistic opposition to the Great War and his ideas on war and the prevention of it directly affected the thinking of other individuals through his books, articles and speeches. On occasion, Russell’s concepts were echoed spontaneously by other like-minded people – often from dissimilar

in A war of individuals
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
Open Access (free)
Interpreting Violence on Healthcare in the Early Stage of the South Sudanese Civil War
Xavier Crombé and Joanna Kuper

Introduction 1 On 15 December 2013, only two and a half years after the Republic of South Sudan had become an independent state, the long-simmering tensions between President Salva Kiir and his former vice-president, Riek Machar, erupted into armed clashes in the capital, Juba. War soon broke out. This article seeks to document and analyse violence affecting the provision of healthcare by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and its intended beneficiaries in the early stage of the

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
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
Open Access (free)
Ian Scott and Henry Thompson

1 War Introduction This I feel. A curse. Mother said it more than once, ‘You could be killed over there, Oliver,’ as if I were incompetent, not man enough to take care of myself; I hated her motherlove arrogance. Did I listen? Did it make sense? Mothers are cowards. Curses passed down the vaginal passageways deep to man. True as true can be. I told her that I didn’t really want to go back to Yale, I was an adventurer, just like her and went to Vietnam instead. But I wonder what she’ll say when she finds out about this. My limbs stiffening, waiting in this groin

in The cinema of Oliver Stone
Paul Latawski and Martin A. Smith

Since the end of the Cold War, NATO has been significantly reoriented and retooled across the board. This process of change has been captured under two main labels. Internal adaptation is NATO-speak for looking at how the institution works, and whether it can be made to work better and more effectively. The process has embraced the possibility of creating procedures and structures whereby European member

in The Kosovo crisis and the evolution of post-Cold War European security