Feature Articles - Women and WWI - Women Writers and World War I

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Women Writers and World War I

For a very complete bibliography see: Ouditt, Sharon (ed.) Women Writers of the First World War: An Annotated Bibliography (London: Routledge, 1999).  Ouditt excludes poetry by women on the grounds that Catherine Reilly's (ed.) Scars upon My Heart: Women's Poetry and Verse of the First World War (London: Virago Press, 1981) covers the field very well, as it certainly does.

Ouditt lists 160 'contemporary accounts' (books, articles), 21 official publications, 19 diaries, 15 volumes of letters, 61 autobiographies, journals, archive material, literary criticism, social and cultural history, and biographies.  Most of the primary sources were published during the war or in its aftermath (up to 1939).

See also the anthologies edited by Joyce Marlow, The Virago Book of Women and the Great War, 1914-18 (London: Virago, 1998) and by Angela K. Smith. (ed.) Women's Writing of the First World War: An Anthology (Manchester: M.U.P., 2000).

Outstanding Work by Women Writers on WWI

Crocker, Bosworth. Pawns of War (1918)
Deuchar, Mrs. ('Herbert Tremaine'). Handmaidens of Death
Hamilton, Cicely. The Child in Flanders: A Nativity Play (1917)
John, Gwen. Luck of War (1917)
Tylee, Claire (ed.) War Plays by Women: An International Anthology. London: Routledge, 1999.
Wentworth, Marion Craig. War Brides (1914)
Joan Littlewood's Theatre Workshop, Oh! What a Lovely War (1963)

Aldrich, Mildred. A Hilltop on the Marne (1915), On the Edge of the War Zone (1917), The Peak of the Load (1918) and When Johnny Comes Marching Home (1919)
Asquith, Cynthia. Diaries 1915-18 (1968)
Bagnold, Edith. Diary Without Dates (1917)
Borden, Mary. The Forbidden Zone (1929)
Brittain, Vera. Testament of Youth (1933)
Cannan, May Wedderburn. The Lonely Generation (1934), Grey Ghosts and Voices (1976)
Fisher, Dorothy Canfield. Home Fires in France (1918)
Hamilton, Cecily. Life Errant (1934)
Jameson, Storm. No Time like the Present (1933)
La Motte, Ellen. The Backwash of War: The Human Wreckage of the Battlefield as Witnessed by an American Hospital Nurse (1916)
Lee, Vernon (Violet Page). Peace with Honour (1915)
Mansfield, Katherine. Journal of Katherine Mansfield (1954)
Sergeant, Elisabeth S. Shadow Shapes: The Journal of a Wounded Woman (1920)
Sinclair, May. A Journal of Impressions in Belgium (1915)
Stobart, Mabel Annie (Mrs. St Clair). The Flaming Sword in Serbia and Elsewhere (1917)
Thomas, Ellen. As it Was (1926)
Ward, Mrs. Humphrey. England's Effort (1916), Towards the Goal (1917), Fields of Victory (1919)
Wharton, Edith. Fighting France (1915)
Woolf, Virginia. Three Guineas (1938)

Allatini, Rose. Despised and Rejected (1918)
Anthony, Patricia. Flanders (2000)
Bagnold, Edith. The Happy Foreigner (1920)
Barker, Pat. The Regeneration Trilogy: Regeneration (1991), The Eye in the Door (1993), The Ghost Road (1995)
Benson, Stella. This is the End (1917)
Bentley, Phyllis. The Rise of Henry Morcar (1946)
Borden, Mary. Sara Gay (1931)
Brazil, Angela. A Patriotic Schoolgirl (1918)
Butler, Eliza Maria. Daylight in a Dream (1951)
Cather, Willa. One of Ours (1922)
Cooper, Diana Manners. The Rainbow Comes and Goes (1958)
Darrell, Elizabeth. At the Going Down of the Sun (1985)
Davis, Margaret Hamilton. The Clydesiders (trilogy, 1999)
Delafield, E.M. The War Workers (1918)
Drummond, Emma. Act of Valour (1998)
Erdrich, Louise. The Master Butchers Singing Club (2003)
Fisher, Dorothy Canfield. The Deepening Stream (1930)
Hall, Radclyffe. The Well of Loneliness (1928), 'Miss Ogilvy Finds Herself' (1934)
Hamilton, Cicely. William, an Englishman (1920)
Hamilton, Mary Agnes. Dead Yesterday (1916), Special Providence (1930)
Harraden, Beatrice. Where your Treasure is (1918)
H.D. (Hilda Doolittle). Bid me to Live (1960)
Hickey, Patricia. Green Poppies (2004)
Hill, Susan. Strange Meeting (1971)
Holtby, Winifrid. The Crowded Street (1924)
Itani, Frances. Deafening (2004)
Jameson, Storm. That was Yesterday (1932), The Captain's Wife (1939)
Jesse, F. Tennyson. The Sword of Deborah (1919)
Johnston, Jennifer. How Many Miles to Babylon (1967)
Kaye-Smith, Sheila. Little England (1918)
Macaulay, Rose. Non-combatants and Others What Not (1918)
Mansfield, Katherine. 'The Fly' (1923)
Rathbone, Irene. We that Were Young (1932)
Robins, Elizabeth. The Messenger (1919)
Saunders, Kate. Night Shall Overtake Us (1994)
Sinclair, May. Tasker Jevons (1916), The Tree of Heaven (1916), The Romantic (1917)
Sitwell, Dame Edith. I Live under a Black Sun (1937)
Smith, Helena Zenna (Evadne Price). Not so Quiet
Sole, Linda. The Last Summer of Innocence (1992)
Stern, G.B. Children of No Man's Land (1919)
Tate, Trudi (ed.) Women, Men and the Great War: An Anthology of Stories. Manchester: M.U.P., 1995.
Von Arnim, Elizabeth. Christine (1917)
Ward, Mrs. Humphrey. 'Missing' (1917), The War and Elizabeth (1918)
West, Rebecca. The Return of the Soldier (1918)
White, Antonia. Beyond the Glass (1954)
Wilson, Theodora Wilson. The Last Weapon (1914)
Woolf, Virgina. Jacob's Room (1921), Mrs. Dalloway (1925)
Wharton, Edith. The Marne (1918) and A Son at the Front (1923)

Reilly, Catherine (ed.). Scars upon My Heart: Women's Poetry and Verse of the First World War. London: Virago Press, 1981.  With selections from 532 authors, among them Alice Meynell, Charlotte Mew, Edith Nesbit, May Sinclair, Cicely Hamilton and Kathleen Tynan

Brittain, Vera. Verses of a VAD (1918)
Cannan, May Wedderburn. In War Time (1917)
Cole, Margaret Postaget. Poems (1918)
Macaulay, Rose. Three Days (1919)
Meynell, Alice. Poems on the War (1916)
Orr, Emily. A Harvester of Dreams (1922)
Pope, Jessie. War Poems (1915)
Sackville, Margaret. The Pageant of War (1916)
Tynnan, Kathleen. Poems in War Time (1915)

Other women war poets: Edith Bagnold, Elizabeth Daryush, Mary Webb, Edith Sitwell, Eleanor Farjeon, Nancy Cunard, Louisa Prior, Marjorie Pratt, H.D., Eva Dobell, May Herschel-Clarke, Storm Jameson.

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Women and WWI