The centenary of the First World War has acted as a catalyst for intense public and academic attention. One of the most prominent manifestations of this increasing interest in the conflict is in the proliferation of digital resources made available recently.
Asked to call to mind images of children and war in Britain, and the most ready association is that of children living through the ordeal of bombing and evacuation in the Second World War. The Children’s War, Britain 1914–1918 re-directs our attention to the lives of British children in the Great War.
In 1919, Douglas C. McMurtrie, Director of the Red Cross Institute for Crippled and Disabled Men, remarked that, ‘beyond reaches of history, the disabled man has been a castaway of society’.
In an article for The Times Magazine published earlier this year, the novelist Sebastian Faulks characterized relations between soldiers of the First World War (whose monolithic perspective he takes on in the article) and British civilians thus: ‘When you return home, on leave, wounded or, with luck, demobilised in 1918, you will find that people have little idea of what you have endur
The study of war and memory has been popular amongst cultural historians for over two decades, yet scholarly interest in the subject shows no sign of abating. Indeed, as this collection demonstrates, memory remains a fruitful area of research, particularly if approached from a comparative perspective.
‘We have to produce something that doesn’t yet exist and of which we can have no idea of what it will be’.
‘World War I is one of the most studied topics of modern scholarship.
Timing counts for so much in publishing and that is never clearer than when a major anniversary approaches. With the centenary of the First World War not yet actually upon us, there has already been a rush of publications. Meanwhile, just as many of the grandest television and radio programmes promised by the BBC have already been aired. Do we know anything we did not know a year or two ago?
While there has been sustained focus on modern women’s relationship to their culture and society, and, with the upcoming centennial commemorations of the First World War a surge of renewed interest in the art generated by the conflict, war-related imagery produced by women artists remains largely overlooked.
Donald Hankey was – and has remained – one of the most enigmatic personalities to feature in the narrative of the Great War.