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Open Access (free)
Christine E. Hallett

war generation to destruction. It was also an act of feminism. In her later memoir, Testament of Experience, Brittain described how she had read the war memoirs of Robert Graves, Richard Aldington, Erich Maria Remarque, Ernest Hemingway, Edmund Blunden, and Siegfried Sassoon, and wondered: ‘Why should these young men have the war to themselves?’.41 Women, too, had entered war with high ideals, suffered disillusionment, and then somehow found the courage to go on. Although Testament of Youth was written primarily in memory of the men Brittain had lost – her fiancé

in Nurse Writers of the Great War
Open Access (free)
Jonathan Atkin

, to become immune to the beauty of a sunset or early morning mists. Only occasionally did he find that these sights brought back a ‘grubbing in one’s wretched soul’. Most of the time he felt isolated and devoid of feelings; now, his ‘most real life’ was with his own inner thoughts, and this encouraged him to the Three individuals 199 resolution (as it had Siegfried Sassoon) that, ‘one must keep an inner life going’, if one wished to preserve anything of an individual’s former independence of thought if not of action. His feeling of comradeship was one of the few

in A war of individuals
Claude McKay’s experience and analysis of Britain
Winston James

’s Magazine and a staunch supporter of McKay’s, wrote letters to George Bernard Shaw (whom McKay was to meet shortly after his arrival) and the publisher Grant Richards. Harris asked Richards to introduce McKay to Siegfried Sassoon. ‘See that he gets a good welcome[,] will you’, Harris wrote, in a tone at once beseeching and commanding. 15 Max Eastman and his sister Crystal Eastman, editors of the

in West Indian intellectuals in Britain
Jonathan Atkin

Russell, Edward Carpenter, Israel Zangwill, Patrick Geddes, Henri Barbusse and Siegfried Sassoon. This ‘newer’ civilisation would discard living soldiers as well as toy ones and would enable man to understand his adversary instead of trying to destroy him, while common humanity would be expressed by a shared appreciation of beauty and the processes of creation rather than destruction, as Russell had also hoped. Reason would triumph over material force: principle over policy and love over hate. It had been largely the practicalities of rehousing the dispossessed that had

in A war of individuals
Open Access (free)
Robert Mackay

’s End (1929), Siegfried Sassoon, The Complete Memoirs of George Sherston (1937), Robert Graves, Goodbye to All That (1929), Philip Noel-Baker, Hawkers of Death (1934), C. S. Forester, The General (1936). 14 Harold Nicolson, Diaries and Letters 1939–45 (Collins,1967), p. 52. 15 Hugh Dalton, The Fateful Years (Frederick Muller, 1957), p. 200. 16 See J. Bardon, A History of Ulster (The Blackstaff Press, 1992), pp. 552–5. 17 O’Brien, Civil Defence, pp. 95–6. 18 Hansard, 15 November 1937, vol. 329, col. 42. 19 Report of the Committee on Evacuation, Cmd. 5837, p. 3. 20

in Half the battle
Open Access (free)
Jonathan Atkin

critics who viewed a war novel as naturally inferior to a ‘truthful’ memoir: ‘We anxiously assure one another that the George Sherston of one book is Mr. Siegfried Sassoon’57 (alluding to Sassoon’s fictional counterpart). The waters of analysis were muddied further by certain memoirs/novels in which an almost deliberately thin line was placed between fact and fiction, as in the accounts of Helen Zenna Smith/ Evadne Price, Mary Borden and others. In addition, it was rare indeed to find a woman’s account, fictional or otherwise, of events surrounding individual humanistic

in A war of individuals