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By the end of today’s lesson you should be able to... • Understand why the reasons why men wanted to ‘Join up’ at the outbreak of war (All) • Analyse posters to find out their meaning (Most) • Be able to identify the meaning of sources and explain how they get their message across.(Some)
Keyword: Enlistment – To join the armed forces. Voluntary Enlistment – To voluntarily join the armed forces. All over Britain, men ‘signed up’ to fight for theircountry. During the this lesson you are going to try and answer the question:
Task • Whilst you are watching the short clip, you should listen for the answers of these two questions and write them down in your book. • What was a Pals Battalion? • What reasons are given for men wanting to enlist? • (This clip is one of fourteen clips in which actor John Gregor recreates a Great War soldier called Henry Fairhurst of the Barnsley Pals.) • http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/education/focuson/film/film-archive/player.asp?catID=2&subCatID=3&filmID=12.
Task In the middle of your page, write the word ENLISTMENT. Your task is to read the sources to try and establish WHY men wanted to ‘join up’ in 1914. Write any reasons you find on your mind map. Push yourself: Provide evidence (a short quote from the source) that supports your point of view.
W H A Groom, poor bloody infantry. A military band and marching soldiers are always an inspiring sight, but this was for real – they were off to war and how we youngsters envied them... And to tell you the truth that was it – glamour – to be in uniform – to take part in a great adventure was as much the reason for so many youths joining up as any sense of patriotism...
J R Falcon, Sherwood Foresters Myself, Archie, Jimmy and Peter all signed up together. We felt comforted that we could all fight side by side! Defeat the hun and be home for Christmas is what they told us!
I was listening to a ginger-haired girl giving a recruiting speech at Hyde Park Corner on 24 July 1915. I was seventeen at the time but eager to go. So when ‘Ginger’ gently pushed a white feather into my buttonhole, I went off to the recruiting office. H. Symonds, speaking in 1964
I had just signed articles of clerkship in my father’s office, to become a solicitor, and had to face the prospect of going down to the office every morning and coming back from the office every evening for the next five solid years. And here was a glorious opportunity to break away and look for adventure. Lieutenant Philip Howe, in M. Brown, Tommy goes to War, 1970
Britain only had a small standing army and until 1916 relied solely on volunteers. • Realizing that Britain would need a massive army, Lord Kitchener, the British Secretary of War, persuaded the government to run a massive poster campaign.
Keyword: Propaganda – A message designed to convince people to think or act in a certain way.
Task It is your task to now analyse the propaganda posters that were used by the government during the first part of World War One. You should select one poster and then begin to analyse it for the following three questions: All: What can you identify within the poster? Most: What is the message of the poster? Some: What techniques are used within the poster to help it get it’s message across? Have a look at this example…
All: What can you identify within the poster? There is a image of a Soldier in the front of the poster. Behind him there is a view of the British countryside, with lush green colours and a bright blue sky. The words says “Isn’t this worth fighting for?” Most: What is the message of the poster? The message of the poster is that men of fighting age should enlist to join the army. The poster is trying to make the reader feel proud of his country and willing to defend it at all costs. Some: What techniques are used within the poster to help it get it’s message across? The poster works because it plays people’s feelings of ‘home’. The poster shows rolling hills and lush green grass. It paints a perfect picture of Britain. The caption underneath, saying “Isn’t this worth fighting for?” is designed to provoke feelings within men that they should rush out and sign up immediately. Propaganda is used here, related to the way Britain is portrayed. In reality all of Britain did not look like this. Many places were poor and overcrowded, and in a number of cases men signed up to escape the conditions not fight for them! By painting a beautiful image it was designed to make men feel Britain was too beautiful to be destroyed.
Task Which poster do you think was most persuasive? You MUST explain your reasons why! Push yourself: Which poster contains the most propaganda?
Plenary Did men ‘join up’ simply because they loved their country? Whatever your decision – you must provide a reason to support your judgement!
Homework You should produce a poster that persuades men to ‘join up’. It should have a clear message and uses a number of the techniques we have looked at this lesson.