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Women of warGender, modernity and the First Aid Nursing Yeomanry$
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Juliette Pattinson

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781526145659

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: January 2021

DOI: 10.7765/9781526145666

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‘Fresh laurels for the brow of womanhood’: The formation of a female nursing yeomanry

‘Fresh laurels for the brow of womanhood’: The formation of a female nursing yeomanry

(p.34) 1 ‘Fresh laurels for the brow of womanhood’: The formation of a female nursing yeomanry
Women of war

Juliette Pattinson

Manchester University Press

The FANY, a small, patriotic, imperialist organisation that epitomised Edwardian Britishness in both its modern and reactionary forms, was founded in a period of intense anxiety about and scrutiny of the country’s readiness for a future conflict. While much of the reorganisation of civic life focused on boys and men in order to improve their physical fitness, the FANY sought to attract strong athletic women who were motivated by a desire to assist their country as mounted first aiders. While couching his vision in very conventional terms of feminine compassion that harked back to Florence Nightingale, the FANY founder, Edward Baker, simultaneously visualised a much more modern, extended, active and physically demanding role for women. This chapter utilises Corps ephemera such as its magazine, minutes of meetings and regulations, as well as newspaper articles, published and unpublished FANY memoirs, and archived interviews to examine the climate in which the Corps was formed, the dual rationale of nursing and equestrianism that was central to the notion of the organisation, and the social composition of its membership.

Keywords:   militarisation, yeomanry, nursing

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