Fighting the People's War
Author(s): Jonathan Fennell
Publication Date: 07-05-2020
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Fighting the People's War is an unprecedented, panoramic history of the 'citizen armies' of the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, India, New Zealand and South Africa, the core of the British and Commonwealth armies in the Second World War. Drawing on new sources to reveal the true wartime experience of the ordinary rank and file, Jonathan Fennell fundamentally challenges our understanding of the War and of the relationship between conflict and socio-political change. He uncovers how fractures on the home front had profound implications for the performance of the British and Commonwealth armies and he traces how soldiers' political beliefs, many of which emerged as a consequence of their combat experience, proved instrumental to the socio-political changes of the postwar era. Fighting the People's War transforms our understanding of how the great battles were won and lost as well as how the postwar societies were forged.
- Integrates the military, political and social histories of Britain, Australia, Canada, India, New Zealand and South Africa
- Uses 925 censorship reports based on 17 million soldiers' letters to shed new light on their experiences, performance and political beliefs
- Provides new explanations for the performance of the British and Commonwealth armies in campaigns, including the crises of 1940–42, Cassino, D-Day and Normandy
- The first comprehensive history of the British and Commonwealth armies in the Second World War