The Long Face of War: Horses and the Nature of Warfare in the French and British Armies on the Western Front

by Tempest, Gene Marie, Ph.D., YALE UNIVERSITY, 2013, 362 pages; 3578461


The first scholarly work to focus on the French and British armies' 2.7 million horses in the First World War, this dissertation recasts how we view the war and how we understand its combatant experience. The discussion of logistics, of man and horse power on the Western Front and at home, of equine and mechanical traction in war, of animal bodies and their representation, bears on cultural, environmental and economic historiographies, overturning the presumption that modern firepower banished the horse from the battlefield and arguing that horse power was essential to industrialized war in the early twentieth century. The history of horses at war is intrinsically tied to local and global phenomena; animals and their fuel were central questions of national security before 1914, and impacted how the war was planned and fought. This work is based on extensive research in previously overlooked archives: it deploys veterinary sources, re-examines military documents, and re-reads soldiers' letters and children's literature.

AdviserJohn Merriman
Source TypeDissertation
SubjectsEuropean history; Military history
Publication Number3578461

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