Voices From the Front

Voices From the Front

An Oral History of the Great War

Book - 2016
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In the 1980s and early 1990s, Peter Hart, then a young oral historian at the Imperial War Museum in London, conducted 183 interviews with British World War I veterans. After the death of the last veteran in 2009, these interviews have become a rare and valuable record of the Great War as remembered by the men who experienced it themselves. Hart uses these interviews as a framework on which to build a more detailed, varied and individualistic depiction of Britain's experience of the First World War. By including quotes from men such as William Holbrook, who was just 15 when he enlisted, Hart is able to examine the experience of adolescent and young adult soldiers during the War; moreover, through his inclusion of testimony from men such as Harold Bing, who attended the Trafalgar Square anti-war demonstration, Hart provides readers with a vision of an attitude towards the War that was completely alternate from young enlisters like Holbrook. The result of the book's testimonial focus is history as both narrative and recollection; war experienced first-hand but looked at now from a great distance, ultimately giving the reader a feel for what the trenches were like, rather than a strict retelling of battles. It is this blend of narrative and recollection, experience and distance that will allow the reader to both empathize with, and learn from, the unique and unforgettable perspectives of the men that survived the First World War..
Publisher: New York : Oxford University Press, c2016
ISBN: 9780190464936
0190464933
Characteristics: xv, 424 p. ; 25 cm

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