The Clergy in Khaki: New Perspectives on British Army Chaplaincy in the First World War

The Clergy in Khaki: New Perspectives on British Army Chaplaincy in the First World War

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The Clergy in Khaki: New Perspectives on British Army Chaplaincy in the First World War by Edward Madigan, Michael Snape, John Bourne

British army chaplains have not fared well in the mythology of the First World War. Like its commanders they have often been characterized as embodiments of ineptitude and hypocrisy. Yet, just as historians have reassessed the motives and performance of British generals, this collection offers fresh insights into the war record of British chaplains.

Drawing on the expertise of a dozen academic researchers, the collection offers an unprecedented analysis of the subject that embraces military, political, religious and imperial history. The volume also benefits from the professional insights of chaplains themselves, several of its contributors being serving or former members of the Royal Army Chaplains’ Department. Providing the fullest and most objective study yet published, it demonstrates that much of the post-war hostility towards chaplains was driven by political, social or even denominational agendas and that their critics often overlooked the positive contribution that chaplains made to the day-to-day struggles of soldiers trying to cope with the appalling realities of industrial warfare and its aftermath.

As the most complete study of the subject to date, this collection marks a major advance in the historiography of the British army, of the British churches and of British society during the First World War, and will appeal to researchers in a broad range of academic disciplines.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781409474425
Publisher: Ashgate Publishing Ltd
Publication date: 06/28/2013
Series: Ashgate Studies in First World War History
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

Michael Snape is Reader in Religion, War and Society at the University of Birmingham. He has published extensively on this theme and his books include The Back Parts of War: The YMCA Memoirs and Letters of Barclay Baron, 1915-1919 (2009); The Royal Army Chaplains’ Department 1796-1953: Clergy Under Fire (2008); God and the British Soldier: Religion and the British Army in the First and Second World Wars (2005) and The Redcoat and Religion: The Forgotten History of the British Soldier from the Age of Marlborough to the eve of the First World War (2005).

Edward Madigan is Resident Historian at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission and a visiting fellow to the Changing Character of War Programme at the University of Oxford. His work combines religious, military and cultural history and he has published articles and book chapters on a range of themes relating to British identity and culture in wartime and the British and Irish experience of the Great War. His first book, Faith Under Fire: Anglican Army Chaplains and the Great War, was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2011.

Edward Madigan, Michael Snape, J.H. Thompson, Neil Allison, Ieuan Elfryn Jones, David Coulter, Stuart Bell, Gary Sheffield, James Hagerty, Peter Howson, Linda Parker, Alan Robinson.

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