Women writers, death and the First World War
297pp. Edinburgh University Press. 80 [pounds sterling].
The 1920s were years of ghosts and memorials. The hundreds of thousands of British war dead, whose broken bodies lay in France, Turkey, Italy and Belgium, haunted survivors' imaginations. We are familiar with the war poets' response to the industrial slaughter: Wilfred Owen's soldier drowning from within after a gas attack, or Robert Graves's green and stinking "Dead Boche" left unburied in Mametz Wood. But what of women writers' responses, enmeshed as they were with feelings of uselessness, jealousy and the guilt of the survivor?
In this careful and scholarly volume, which takes in nurses' memoirs and works of fiction...