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Captives of War

Author(s): Clare Makepeace

ISBN: 9781316509289
Publication Date: 12-09-2019
Pages: 308
Format: Paperback
Regular price £22.99 GBP
Regular price Sale price £22.99 GBP

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This is a pioneering history of the experience of captivity of British prisoners of war (POWs) in Europe during the Second World War, focussing on how they coped and came to terms with wartime imprisonment. Clare Makepeace reveals the ways in which POWs psychologically responded to surrender, the camaraderie and individualism that dominated life in the camps, and how, in their imagination, they constantly breached the barbed wire perimeter to be with their loved ones at home. Through the diaries, letters and log books written by seventy-five POWs, along with psychiatric research and reports, she explores the mental strains that tore through POWs' minds and the challenges that they faced upon homecoming. The book tells the story of wartime imprisonment through the love, fears, fantasies, loneliness, frustration and guilt that these men felt, shedding new light on what the experience of captivity meant for these men both during the war and after their liberation.

  • The first cultural history to be written on British prisoners of war in Europe in World War Two, drawing upon the insights of anthropology, psychology, sociology and literary studies
  • Explores the emotional and intimate worlds of POWs to improve our understanding of what these men went through
  • Shows how diaries, letters and logbooks composed in captivity did not simply record experiences but also interacted with, shaped and altered them