This small army of women : Canadian volunteer nurses and the First World War

TitleThis small army of women : Canadian volunteer nurses and the First World War
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsQuiney, Linda
PublisherVancouver UBC Press
Abstract

With her linen head scarf and white apron emblazoned with a red cross, the Voluntary Aid Detachment nurse, or VAD, has become a romantic emblem of the Great War. This book tells the story of the nearly two thousand women from Canada and Newfoundland who volunteered to "do their bit" overseas and at home. Well-educated and middle-class but largely untrained, VADs were excluded from Canadian military hospitals overseas (the realm of the professional nurse) but helped solve Britain's nursing deficit. Their struggle to secure a place at their brothers' bedsides reveals much about the tensions surrounding amateur and professional nurses and women's evolving role outside the home