War girls

The First Aid Nursing Yeomanry in the First World War

By Janet Lee

War girls

Book Information

  • Format: Paperback
  • ISBN: 978-0-7190-6713-6
  • Pages: 284
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £16.99
  • Published Date: July 2012
  • BIC Category: SOCIAL SCIENCE / Gender Studies, Society & social sciences / Gender studies: women, Humanities / First World War, Modern History, History, Gender studies: women & girls, Gender studies, gender groups, First World War, c 1910 to c 1919, SOCIAL SCIENCE / Women's Studies


War Girls reveals the fascinating story of the British women who volunteered for service in the First Aid Nursing Yeomanry during the Great. Examining their experiences on the Western Front with the Belgian, British and French Armies, this book shows how the FANY worked as nurses and ambulance driver-mechanics, inspiring stories of female heroism and solidarity.

The FANY created skilled gendered performances against the cultural myths of the time, and in concert with their emerging legend. Coming from privileged backgrounds, they drew upon and subverted traditional arrangements, crafting new and unconventional identities for themselves.

The author shares the stories of the FANY - a fascinating, quirky and audacious group of women - and illustrates the ways the Great War subverted existing gender arrangements. It will make fascinating reading for those working in the field of gender and war, as well as those who wish to find out more about this remarkable group of women.


I. Aristocratic amazons in arms: The founding of the FANY 1907-14
2. The great adventures begin: Grace Ashley-Smith in Belgium Autumn 1914
3. Band of Hope: FANY with the Belgians at Lamarck Hospital 1914-15
4. Not a woman, but a FANY: Working for the British in Calais 1916 5. Progression is our watchword: The Belgian Convoy and Port à Binson Priory hospital 1917
6. Petticoat warriors: The French units and the convoy at St Omer 1917-18
7. Esprit de corps: FANY service after the Armistice 1918-19 Postscript


Janet Lee is Professor of Women Studies at Oregon State University

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