Testament of Youth
Much of what we know and feel about the First World War we owe to Vera Brittain’s elegiac yet unsparing book, which set a standard for memoirists from Martha Gellhorn to Lillian Hellman. Abandoning her studies at Oxford in 1915 to enlist as a nurse in the armed services, Brittain served in... show more
Much of what we know and feel about the First World War we owe to Vera Brittain’s elegiac yet unsparing book, which set a standard for memoirists from Martha Gellhorn to Lillian Hellman. Abandoning her studies at Oxford in 1915 to enlist as a nurse in the armed services, Brittain served in London, in Malta, and on the Western Front. By war’s end she had lost virtually everyone she loved. Testament of Youth is both a record of what she lived through and an elegy for a vanished generation. Hailed by the Times Literary Supplement as a book that helped "both form and define the mood of its time," it speaks to any generation that has been irrevocably changed by war. * New introduction by Brittain's biographer examines her struggles to write about her experiences and the book's reception in England and America
Publish date: May 31st 2005
Publisher: Penguin Classics
Pages no: 688
Edition language: English
I have a few pet peeves when it comes to history, but my biggest by far is the question of why the world did not stop Adolf Hitler before he plunged Europe into war. I find it a frustrating question on a number of levels. At its most basic, it's an abuse of hindsight, expecting people in the 1930s t...
I read "Testament of Youth" earlier this sumer in anticipation of the movie. I loved, loved, loved this book. It was my very first introduction to Brittain, having never even heard of her before, let alone being familiar with her work, but it won't be the last. I'm looking forward to exploring some ...
Testament of Youth was a best seller when it was first published in 1933, and became a bestseller once again in the 1970s. It is every bit as good as I'd remembered when I read it first about twenty years ago. Vera Brittain's lively intelligence, determination, bravery and passion all shine through....
This is an eyeopening book. An autobiography of a woman born just prior to the turn of the 20th C, describing her experiences through WW1 until 1925. It is, as might be expected, massive in scope, describing how the war changed things on both a large and small scale. Individually, she lost the boys/...
Re-read, from Mar 2009. Maybe it was because I had a deadline - it being this month's book club book, but I got really quite annoyed with this book. The most obvious element that annoyed me was the sensation that Vera seemed to think that the world owed her something because of her experiences durin...