A fresh new look at a young nation at war
The Great War is now typically regarded as senseless and futile, but most New Zealanders at the time considered it to be a war to preserve security and freedoms, to punish an aggressive enemy and to win a better world.
Yet the war years proved a tumultuous time, and bitterness and animosities ran alongside idealism and sacrifice. Families were broken up as soldiers departed. Civil liberties were curtailed as the government wielded unprecedented powers. Divisive issues, economic volatility and a rising death toll all threatened resolve. Finally, in the last weeks of the war, a devastating influenza pandemic arrived in New Zealand and extracted a deadly toll.
In The Home Front Steven Loveridge and James Watson offer a compelling account of how a small and developing country confronted the complex questions and brutal realities of a world war.
‘The Home Front uses relatively few illustrations but they are superbly reproduced. But it is the clarity and orderliness of the text which makes the book a ready reference to what is an extremely broad subject. The footnotes will direct you to more detailed information and the basically chronological structure takes you easily through five traumatic years. Our first experience of total war was a mixed one and The Home Front depiction of it all is a fine addition to the WW1 library.’ — Jim Sullivan, Otago Daily Times
To look inside, click here.
James Watson is Associate Professor in History at Massey University. His research focuses largely on the relationship between New Zealand and the UK in the twentieth century.
Steven Loveridge holds a PhD from Victoria University of Wellington and works from the Stout Research Centre for New Zealand Studies.