Our Daily Bread - The Field Bakery & the Anzac Legend

Pamela May Etcell

Our Daily Bread - The Field Bakery & the Anzac Legend
VDM Verlag Dr. Mueller E.K.
1 July 2008

Our Daily Bread - The Field Bakery & the Anzac Legend

Pamela May Etcell

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World War One and the Australian Imperial Force have generated thousands of books and articles. Many studies adhere to the emphasis of C.E.W. Bean, and recount the history of the infantry or a particular infantry battalion. Others examine the short term and long-lasting effects of the war on the Australian psyche. Some historians have acknowledged that a particular group of non-fighting combatants has been neglected, but generally, this group has been employed in dan-gerous and difficult pursuits. Few historians have studied the roles of non-fighting combatants whose contribution is considered as lack-lustre, such as the Australian Field Bakeries. While researching the war service of her grandfather and the accompanying longstanding family furphies, the author could not understand why the Field Bakeries did not play any part in the historiography of WWI. An examination of the Anzac legend revealed an emphasis on the characteristics of mascu-linity and heroism; characteristics the bakers were perceived to be lacking. Comparing statistics, war experiences, values and attitudes of the 1st AIF and the bakers, the author concludes that they were extra-ordinarily similar in all respects.

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