Portraits of Battle brings together biography, battle accounts, and historiographical analysis to examine the lives of a cross-section of Canadians who served in the war, exploring key issues in the process. To what extent did new technologies challenge orthodoxy on how to wage war? How did men in the trenches cope with suffering? How did gender roles evolve under fire, and to what degree did those changes survive the return home?
Contributors to this thoughtful collection consider the range of Canadians touched by war – soldiers and their loved ones, deserters, nurses, Indigenous people, those injured in body or mind – raising fundamental questions about the nature of conflict and memory. All Canadians are taught about Vimy Ridge, but that celebrated victory was just one battle among many to shape the country’s experience of the First World War.
These portraits of the formerly faceless men and women honoured on war memorials fill in what is often missing from accounts of the Great War. In the process, they provide a more nuanced perspective on the complex legacy of that war in Canadian history.
This will book will appeal not only to students and scholars of the First World War and Canadian history but to a wide array of amateur historians with an interest in the war to end all wars.
Richly detailed, Portraits of Battle is devoted to the recognition of the Canadians who fought in the Great War, their bravery and their fears, and the sacrifices made both by the soldiers and their families at home.
Peter Farrugia is an associate professor in the History and Social and Environmental Justice programs at Wilfrid Laurier University and a fellow of the Laurier Centre for Military, Strategic and Disarmament Studies. He is the editor of The River of History: Trans-national and Trans-disciplinary Perspectives on the Immanence of the Past. Evan J. Habkirk is a lecturer in the Indigenous Studies program at the University of Western Ontario and in the History Department at Wilfrid Laurier University. He is also the co-editor of The Art of Communication: The Unveiling of the Bell Memorial Revisited.
Contributors: Graham Broad, Cynthia Comacchio, Kyle Falcon, Sarah Glassford, Geoffrey Hayes, Gordon L. Heath, Teresa Iacobelli, Jonathan F. Vance, Lee Windsor
Introduction / Peter Farrugia
1 The View from Above: A Canadian Pilot in the Battle of Flers-Courcelette / Graham Broad
2 “When Told to Advance, They Advanced”: War Culture and the CEF / Jonathan F. Vance
3 The Voiceless Dead: Francis Jenkins, Regina Trench, and Living and Dying on the Western Front / Kyle Falcon
4 “Going over the Ground Again”: Major Samuel Bothwell, 1st CMR, and Vimy Ridge / Peter Farrugia
5 Soldier or Ward? Hill 70 and the Lived Experience of Private Wilfred Lickers / Evan J. Habkirk
6 Talbot Papineau: The Life and Death of an Imperial Man / Geoffrey Hayes
7 Fallen Sisters: Gender, Military Service, and Death in Canada’s First World War / Sarah Glassford
8 Religion and the Great War: The Canadian Experience / Gordon L. Heath
9 Replacing Leaders: Lieutenant Roy Duplissie and the Hundred Days Campaign from the D-Q to the Marcoing Line / Lee Windsor
10 “Scars upon My Heart”: Arnold and Clarence Westcott, Brothers and Soldiers / Cynthia Comacchio
11 Desertion and Punishment in the CEF during the 100 Days / Teresa Iacobelli
Conclusion / Peter Farrugia
Select Bibliography; Index
Capturing Hill 70
Canada’s Forgotten Battle of the First World War
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