The Land Girls: In a Man's World, 1939-1946

Author(s): Dianne Bardsley

Farming, Animals, & Agriculture | Secondhand

This book is based on the oral histories of 130 women who worked as land girls during the Second World War and the written interviews of 90 others. Wartime land girls broke new ground. Throughout the nation, for the first time, women were in paid employment on farms, making administrative decisions. Previously, wives and daughters of farmers laboured on farms mainly out of economic need, a practice described as 'a disgraceful blot on our national life'! But from 1940, city girls of seventeen and over were sent to work on sheep, cattle, dairy, orchard and poultry properties to take the place of men who had enlisted. Their task was to maintain and increase production from the rural sector. The little that has been written of land girls in war history narratives has tended to be impersonal, statistical and interpretive. After the war, the Women's Land Service was virtually forgotten, and more has been written of it as a controversial 'Cinderella service' than as the collective story of remarkable work histories and sacrifices. Furthermore, land girls making post-war enquiries about their service were told that their records had been destroyed, for land service members were not official army combatants. In unravelling the stories of wartime land girls, the author's aim was to show that, although the Women's Land Service was officially undervalued as the significant war service that it was, its individual members were far from insignificant and have led extraordinary lives. Then and now, they were and are, in very many ways, women out-of-the-ordinary. DoP September 2009, Dunedin 170pp Softcover


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Product Information

General Fields

  • : 9781877133947
  • : Otago University Press
  • : Otago University Press
  • : January 2000
  • : 260mm X 190mm
  • : New Zealand
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Dianne Bardsley
  • : Paperback
  • : 1
  • : Juliet Peter
  • : 331.4830993
  • : Good
  • : 170
  • : b/w photos