By Mark Sheftall
The studies of worldwide battle I touched the lives of a iteration yet thoughts of this momentous adventure fluctuate greatly in the course of the international. In Britain, there has been a powerful response opposed to militarism yet within the Dominion powers of Canada, Australia and New Zealand the reaction used to be very diversified. For those former colonial powers, the adventure of struggle was once mostly accredited as a countrywide ceremony of passage and their satisfaction and recognize for his or her squaddies’ sacrifices came across its concentration in a robust nationalist drive. How did a unmarried, supposedly shared event galvanize such contrasting reactions? What does it show approximately previous, pre-existing principles of nationwide identification? and the way did the reminiscence of battle effect later rules of self-determination and nationhood?
Altered stories of the good War is the 1st publication to check the special collective narratives that emerged inside of Britain and the Dominions in line with global battle I. It powerfully illuminates the variations in addition to the similarities among diversified stories of battle and gives interesting insights into what this finds approximately constructing techniques of nationwide identification within the aftermath of global warfare I.
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Extra resources for Altered memories of the Great War: Divergent narratives of Britain, Australia, New Zealand and Canada
24 Only ten months after the Titanic disaster, Britain was again rocked by tragedy, this time by the news that the polar explorer Robert Falcon Scott, along with the other four members of his party, had died as they attempted to become the first men to reach the South Pole. In death, Scott achieved glory that he never had in 22 ALTERED MEMORIES OF THE GREAT WAR life. St. Paul’s Cathedral held a memorial service that was attended by the King. 25 Perhaps what most captured the imagination of the public was Scott’s last message, written on the day he died.
When war came in 1914, the sons of privilege volunteered for service in droves. The enthusiasm with which some members of this cohort greeted the opportunity to fight is nowhere better expressed than in the soldier poet Rupert Brooke’s ‘Peace,’ written shortly after the outbreak of the war: Now, God be thanked who has matched us with his hour, And caught our youth, and wakened us from sleeping, With hand made sure, clear eye, and sharpened power, To turn, as swimmers into cleanness leaping, Glad from a world grown old and cold and weary, Leave the sick hearts that honour could not move, And half-men, and their dirty songs and dreary, And all the little emptiness of love!
Advocates of ‘imperial nationalism’ were often keen to demonstrate the national potential of Canada, Australia and New Zealand, and to reveal to the world the sterling qualities of the white races hailing from those lands. They also genuinely revered the bonds of heritage and culture that they believed linked the Dominions and the Motherland. Consequently, they typically supported calls for colonial contributions of men and material to Britain’s late-nineteenth century imperial adventures, including, most significantly in terms of scale and cost for the Dominions, the 1899–1902 war in South Africa.
Altered memories of the Great War: Divergent narratives of Britain, Australia, New Zealand and Canada by Mark Sheftall