The position of women underwent huge change between 1914 and 1918. Jan Nielsen looks at the unintended impact of a war that, for the first time, affected every aspect of economic and social life.
During the centenary celebrations historians and commentators have made much of the effect the First World War had on the lives of women. However, most of the coverage has focused on the impact on the lives of middle class women. The recent release of the film version of Testament of Youth illustrates this clearly. Vera Brittain represents the women who volunteered in their thousands to contribute to the war effort.