Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 


Second World War veterans valuable to history


Second World War veterans valuable to history

An author who interviewed about 100 First World War veterans says New Zealanders should value the memories of living veterans before it’s too late.

“There are only about 12,000 Second World War veterans still alive, and they are about 90,” says Jane Tolerton, author of the new World War One Oral History Archive book An Awfully Big Adventure.

“New Zealand will put a big emphasis on the centenary of the First World War in the coming four years, and when the commemorations are over in 2018, most of them may be gone.

“It is 25 years since the World War One Oral History Archive’s work and about 25 years between the wars. So we’re at the same point now with the Second World War veterans.”

Jane Tolerton says the emphasis on remembering those who died in the First World War, rather than those who survived it, may have got in the way of veterans speaking out about their experiences and attitudes. “They were renowned for not talking about the war – but they said people didn’t ask them about it.
“When the bones of the Unknown Warrior were brought back from the Western Front in 2004, Wellingtonians stood in the street in their thousands, some moved to tears. Many of those people had fathers, grandfathers or great grandfathers who were veterans they had never asked about the war. The last veteran had died only the previous year.

“As an oral historian who met a lot of veterans and the daughter of a living Second World War veteran, I know it is harder to talk to family members than to a professional, but if there are significant stories veterans want to tell, now might be the right time to ask. The First World War veterans who did finally speak, got a kick out of putting their experiences on record. They came forward and they said their piece, and they told us they enjoyed doing it. They often apologised for not being better interviewees, even when we thought they were great.

“Second World War veterans can still tell historians the answers to the questions they’ll be trying to answer during the centenary commemorations in 25 years’ time,” says Jane Tolerton. “I’ve recently heard from a man whose mother told him about an incident during her war service when she was on her deathbed. He was so shocked by her revelation he could not find words to ask her what had happened.”

Jane Tolerton also interviewed veterans who responded to her appeals for information on wartime safe sex campaigner Ettie Rout for her award-winning biography published in 1992.

ends


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Eddie Izzard: UK Comedy Legend Returns

Hailed as one of the foremost stand up comedians of his generation. Star of stage and screen. Tireless supporter of charity. Runner. Political campaigner. Fashion Icon... February 2015, Eddie Izzard will bring his massive FORCE MAJEURE world tour to New Zealand with tickets going on sale at 10am on Tuesday 28th October. More>>

Festival Starts 28 Oct: Improv Fest Makes Up New Show

For any other festival, finding out less than two weeks from showtime that half the cast of a programmed show can’t make it to New Zealand would be a nightmare. Instead, the New Zealand Improv Festival Director Jennifer O’Sullivan saw an opportunity ... More>>

NZ Music Awards Finalists: Lorde, Sol3 Mio Top 2014 Tuis Charge

Lorde has taken the music world by storm during the past year and she co-leads the 2014 Tui charge with five finalist spots. Joining her is newcomer family opera trio, Sol3 Mio. They are followed closely by Ladi6 and David Dallas, both up for four awards each. More>>

From 'Luther' Creator: Major New Zealand Crime Series For BBC

Libertine Pictures and writer Neil Cross have teamed up with leading international TV producer Carnival Films to develop a major new crime series set in Rotorua. Libertine will develop the contemporary drama series with Carnival, producer of internationally-acclaimed British period drama Downton Abbey, for the BBC. More>>

ALSO:

Family Statement: Death Of Ewen Gilmour

“Ewen was a much loved and cherished member of our family, he was a larger than life character and by his very nature was kind, generous and always giving of his time to those who asked for his help." More>>

ALSO:

Auckland: St. Jerome's Laneway Festival - Line-Up Announced

Traversing seven cities and three countries, the festival has well and truly settled into its home in each state. From the grassy knolls and towering silos at home in Auckland, to the sparkling backdrop of the Maribyrnong... More>>

Scoop Review Of Books: No Longer An Island

Simon Nathan reviews 'Zealandia: Our Continent Revealed': The idea that New Zealand is part of a large submerged continent is not new... There was renewed interest in the extent of offshore New Zealand from the 1970s onwards with the start of offshore drilling for oil and gas, and this was given impetus by a UN agreement which allowed countries to claim an Extended Continental Shelf (ECS). More>>

Art: Simon Denny Recreates Kim Dotcom’s Personal Effects

Who owns what? How has the internet changed our relation to the world? These are two of the many questions Simon Denny raises in the latest exhibition at the Adam Art Gallery, opening on Saturday 4 October. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Culture
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news