Veterans of the First World War: Ex-Servicemen and Ex-Servicewomen in Post-War Britain and Ireland, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Veterans of the First World War

Ex-Servicemen and Ex-Servicewomen in Post-War Britain and Ireland, 1st Edition

Edited by David Swift, Oliver Wilkinson


208 pages

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Hardback: 9780367174620
pub: 2019-02-21
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This volume synthesises the latest scholarship on First World War veterans in post-war Britain and Ireland, investigating the topic through its political, social and cultural dynamics. It examines the post-war experiences of those men and women who served and illuminates the nature of the post-war society for which service had been given. Complicating the homogenising tendency in existing scholarship it offers comparison of the experiences of veterans in different regions of Britain, including perspectives drawn from Ireland. Further nuance is offered by the assessment of the experiences of ex-servicewomen alongside those of ex-servicemen, such focus deeping understanding into the gendered specificities of post-war veteran activities and experiences. Moreover, case studies of specific cohorts of veterans are offered, including focus on disabled veterans and ex-prisoners of war.

In these regards the collection offers vital updates to existing scholarship while bringing important new departures and challenges to the current interpretive frameworks of veteran experiences in post-war Britain and Ireland.

Table of Contents

List of Contributors


List of Abbreviations

Introduction British Veterans after the First World War

David Swift & Oliver Wilkinson

Chapter 1. The Deep Roots of The British Legion: The Emergence of First World War British Veterans’ Organisations

Mike Hally

Chapter 2. Ex-servicemen and the Soldiers’, Sailors’ and Airmen’s Families Association, 1919-21

Paul Huddie

Chapter 3. Between Workers and Soldiers: The Relationship between the Labour Party and Ex-servicemen after the First World War

Marcus Morris

Chapter 4. ‘A Fighting Man and a Thinking Man’: The British Left, Ex-Servicemen, and Working-Class Culture, 1914-1924

David Swift

Chapter 5. Revolution, Ex-Servicemen, and the Cork Branch of the National Federation of Discharged and Demobilised Sailors and Soldiers, 1918-21

John Borgonovo

Chapter 6. ‘It’s up to you now to fight for your own country’: Ireland’s Great War Veterans in the War of Independence, 1919-21

Steven O’Connor

Chapter 7. ‘Still in the Ranks of the Old Corps, Though Not on Active Service’: Women’s Veteran Organisations in Interwar Britain.

Krisztina Robert

Chapter 8. Paternalism and Prosthetics: Life for Disabled Veterans and Their Families on a Post-War Settlement

Martin Purdy

Chapter 9. Wounded in a Mentionable Place: The (In)visibility of the Disabled Ex-serviceman in Inter-war Britain

Jessica Meyer

Chapter 10. Ex-Prisoners of War, 1914-18: Veteran Association, Assimilation and Disassociation After the First World War

Oliver Wilkinson





About the Editors

David Swift is the Kreitman Postdoctoral Fellow at Ben Gurion University of the Negev

Oliver Wilkinson is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Wolverhampton

About the Series

Routledge Studies in First World War History

The First World War is a subject of perennial interest to historians and is often regarded as a watershed event, marking the end of the nineteenth century and the beginning of the 'modern' industrial world. The sheer scale of the conflict and massive loss of life means that it is constantly being assessed and reassessed to examine its lasting military, political, sociological, industrial, cultural and economic impact. Reflecting the latest international scholarly research, the Routledge Studies in First World War History series provides a unique platform for the publication of monographs on all aspects of the Great War. Whilst the main thrust of the series is on the military aspects of the conflict, other related areas (including cultural, visual, literary, political and social) are also addressed. Books published are aimed primarily at a post-graduate academic audience, furthering exciting recent interpretations of the war, whilst still being accessible enough to appeal to a wider audience of educated lay readers.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / General
HISTORY / Military / World War I