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Sisters in arms : women in the British Armed Forces during the Second World War

"During the First World War various independent women's organisations assisted the armed forces. These included such bodies as the First Aid Nursing Yeomanry (FANY), which ran an ambulance service, and the Women's Legion, which deployed cookery and motor transport sections. Faced, however, with a manpower crisis as a result of the casualties on the western front, the military authorities were forced to establish their own official uniformed women's auxiliary services with the aim of combing out non-combatant servicemen who were fit for frontline service. The Women's Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC) was established in March 1917, the Women's Royal Naval Service (WRNS) in November 1917 and the Women's Royal Air Force (WRAF) in April 1918 - the latter being created on the same day as the RAF. The members of these women's services retained their civilian status and performed mainly 'feminine' roles, such as domestic, clerical and telephonist work, in support of their male 'parent' forces. Some 95,000 women served in these organisations at home and overseas. In the immediate aftermath of the war there was some discussion in military circles over whether the women's services should be retained as part of the permanent strength of the armed forces. But against a backdrop of contracting defence spending, as well as an anti-feminist reaction in some quarters towards women in uniform which associated them with 'unnatural' masculine traits, this was not considered a priority by the male service establishment."--
xii, 341 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm.
Includes bibliographical references (pages [313]-331) and index.
1 januari 2020
  • Boek
  • Crang, Jeremy A.,
  • Bibliotheek NIOD
  • 2020-01-01
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