Chestnut Lodge Wargames Group

Women in War (Part 1)

I was recently startled to hear someone say there were no effective women warriors. I thought they would at least have heard of Boudica of the Iceni, the widowed queen who became a rebel warrior leading 100,000 against the Romans in Britain so successfully that they nearly lost control of the province.
So I have enjoyed gathering together, and in most cases reading and viewing (some are still on my list), the following resources so no one in CLWG would ever repeat such a scandalous comment.

Across time

Women in War: From home to front line.

Edited by Celia Lee and Paul Strong

With contributions from the 1857 Indian Mutiny to World War II.

Lee and Strong have edited a book of personal stories that open up the multiple impacts of war on women: their changing role in warfare, their heroic resistance, and their endurance of male violence.

Women Warriors: An Unexpected History

By Pamela D. Toler

From Vikings and African queens to cross-dressing military doctors and WWII Russian fighter pilots, these are the stories of women for whom battle was not a metaphor.’

World War II

The Unwomanly Face of War: An Oral History of Women in World War II

by Svetlana Alexievich

Alexievich writes the everyday details of life in combat of more than 500 Soviet women who fought alongside men in the Soviet Union’s Great Patriotic War against Nazi Germany.

Inge’s War: A German Woman’s Story of Family, Secrets, and Survival Under Hitler.

By Svenja O’Donnell

With the help of her grandmother, O’Donnell traces the events leading up to and beyond the flight of her grandmother with her parents and her young daughter (O’Donnell’s mother) as they flee Königsberg in Prussia/Germany (now Kaliningrad, Russia) as the Red Army close in.

Women at War (Miniseries)

This mini-series follows the lives of four women as the Germans close in on Saint-Paulin in France. Available on Netflix.

Stalin’s Night Witches (World War II)

‘In October 1941, Stalin gave orders to deploy three all-female air force units. The women would not only fly missions and drop bombs, they would return fire – making the Soviet Union the first nation to officially allow women to engage in combat.’

Night Witches: The Amazing Story of Russia’s Women Pilots in WWII

By Bruce Myles

Wings. Women, and War: Soviet Airwomen in World War II Combat

By Reina Pennington, and John Erikson

Night Witches in the Sky (Film)

Available from Amazon.

Night Swallows (Mini-Series)

Available from Amazon.

Hitler’s Valkyries (World War II)

The women who flew for Hitler: The true story of Hitler’s Valkyries

by Clare Mulley

A dual biography of Hanna Reitsch and Melitta von Stauffenberg, two extraordinary women at the heart of the Third Reich, but who ended their lives on opposite sides of history.

The Asian Theatre (World War II)

The Naga Queen: Ursula Graham Bower and Her Jungle Warriors, 1939-45.

by Vicki Thomas

1944. A young woman yearning for exciting adventures. A Lt. Colonel seeking an unconventional wife. The British Army needing a guerilla recruit to lead Naga scouts and a platoon of soldiers against the Japanese incursions of Nagaland from Burma on their way to India.

Next time some resources on World War I and Africa.


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