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Mourning, memory, and material culture: colonial commemoration of the missing on the Great War's western front.

When the Great War ended with the signing of an armistice on November 11, 1918, life could not immediately resume a semblance of normalcy. Thousands of bodies had to be buried, memorials had to be erected, and societies worldwide were left reeling from the impact of this unprecedented conflict. Although the war impacted many countries, this article focuses on its ramifications for British colonies, because the conflict was a critical point in the history of the British Empire. It complicated the relationship between Britain and its dominions, leaving Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and South Africa navigating new aspects of their national identities and their connections to the metropole. Simultaneously, these countries also had to deal with internal divisions produced or exacerbated by the war, as well as pervasive grief over the colossal loss of life suffered.

A manifestation of this new stage in British-colonial relations was the creation of colonial memorials to the missing on the Western Front. One approach from which to consider this topic is the question: How do the forms and functions of these sites express or suppress colonial identities? However, the reality is more complex than this question implies. This article will argue that although it is tempting to view the relationship between colonial and imperial identity as a dichotomy, and thus the expression of one as a suppression of the other, affinities to Britain were often incorporated within, not repudiated by, the national identities newly asserted by the colonies. There was also tension and overlap between three types of identity forged in the midst of the war: unifying national identity, identity based on shared experiences of the war's personal impact, and factional identities based on internal divisions. Hence, there was no singular cohesive colonial identity for each of these memorials to reflect or suppress. To comprehend the various meanings ascribed to these sites, the memorials must be understood as sites of hybridity: they are intersections of multiple narratives, both personal and collective, and thus have been perceived through the lens of many differing identities over time.

Four sites will be used to illustrate these concepts. After an overview and analysis of each, this article will then address relevant components of the sociopolitical context from the mid-war period onwards, which shaped how people related to the monuments both collectively and as individuals. The first memorial in focus, Delville Wood, is the South African National Memorial, dedicated to all South African soldiers who fought in all theatres of the war. (1) Villers-Bretonneux, the Australian National Memorial to the missing of the Western Front, carries the names of 10,762 soldiers. (2) The Messines Ridge Memorial is one of seven dedicated to New Zealand's missing, and commemorates 828 soldiers who died near Messines. (3) Lastly, the Vimy Memorial is the national Canadian memorial, bearing 11,169 names of soldiers missing in France. (4) These memorials' locations are significant as wartime sites of great loss, great victory, or both, and the monuments themselves are testaments to personal and national achievement, sacrifice, and grief. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) is responsible for these sites, and this ongoing cooperation in commemoration reflects the close ties between Britain and its empire. These ties were more strongly binding in 1914: when Britain declared war on Germany, Britain's dominions (5) were automatically at war too, and were not consulted. (6) However, colonial loyalty ran deep, and the declaration was generally met with enthusiasm.

Several factors combined to make WWI an unprecedented conflict, and this created a new era of war remembrance. WWI was the first conflict in which states were determined to commemorate every fallen soldier individually, (7) especially since the majority of these men were civilian volunteers. (8) Dan Todman has deemed this era the "beginning of history": (9) it has slipped beyond living memory, and yet its rise in materialism, record-keeping, and photography caused tangible artifacts of the war to be created on a vast scale, which, he argues, served to "back up the myths." (10) The "role of public institutions as repositories of memory" (11) allowed for the preservation of these myths, and archaeological evidence of the conflict is also widespread. The ubiquity of war and bereavement resulting from the unparalleled scale of the conflict also added a public, shared dimension to private grief: thousands of individual tragedies created a collective trauma. (12)

At each site, colonial and imperial identities, and the relationships between them, can be extrapolated from the physical forms of the memorials and the circumstances of their construction. Three aspects of the Delville Wood memorial warrant particular attention as reflections of South African identities in relation to Britain. Firstly, the arch has a bilingual inscription in English and Afrikaans, (13) reflecting the complicated history of British and Dutch colonialists in South Africa. Secondly, the memorial is unusual for bearing no names: unique among these four colonies, the missing of South Africa are commemorated individually by name on British memorials, instead of on their separate national memorial. (14) Considering that parts of South Africa were fighting against the British only twelve years earlier in the Second Anglo-Boer War, this unusual decision calls particular attention to the question of South African agency vis-a-vis British control over decisions concerning colonial remembrance. Unfortunately, it is unclear how this commemorative choice was made. Thirdly, the arch is crowned by a sculpture of two men and a horse, created by British artist Alfred Turner. (15) The official description states that the sculpture depicts Castor and Pollux "clasping hands in friendship" and that it is a "symbol of all the peoples of South Africa who are united in their determination to defend their common ideals". (16) Castor and Pollux were Greek mythological twins, and their twinship here presumably represents equality between the two 'white races' of South Africa. Conveniently omitted from the description is the fact that Castor and Pollux had different fathers, causing Pollux to be half-divine and Castor mortal. Approached with this knowledge in mind, the sculpture seems to privilege one of the South African white 'races' over the other, and based on the circumstances it may be read as an assertion of British superiority. (17) The demarcation between colonial and British identity is less distinct here, since Britishness is being portrayed as an integral part of South African identity, instead of as an opposing force to react against.

As with Delville Wood, characteristics of Australia's memorial at Villers-Bretonneux express both colonial and imperial identities and the relationship between them. The Villers-Brettoneux memorial is composed of a 30-metre tower flanked by stone walls listing the missing, each ending with a pavilion. (18) Although the site's creation and upkeep (19) suggest an intermingling of Australian and British agency as well as an inclusion of Britain in the projection of Australian national identity, its existence as a national memorial serves as tangible evidence for a separate Australian identity in remembrance. (20) The uniquely Australian experience of the war is reinforced with a plaque and maps pointing to other Australian battlefields and divisional memorials. (21) Thus, we see in this memorial the assertion of a distinctly Australian identity in tandem with the maintenance of ties to Britain.

Less unified in message is the Messines Ridge memorial, with the names of 828 men who went missing while fighting in the area and is one of seven Western Front memorials to the missing of New Zealand. New Zealand does not have a single memorial at which all of its missing are commemorated together, and so this memorial presents an inherent contradiction between national unity and fragmentation, as well as demonstrating solidarity with British material forms of remembrance. It consists of a Cross of Sacrifice with a stone alcove at its base, and plaques encircling the base bear the names of the missing. (22) Between the plaques hang the New Zealand coat of arms with the phrase "Onward", marshaling a collective identity among the dead, and yet the names of the missing are listed according to military unit, many of which had geographic or ethnic origins (e.g. the Maori Battalion). (23)

The cross ringed by these symbols of national New Zealander unity and fragmentation is, by contrast, a markedly British feature. This demonstrates New Zealand's integration with the Commonwealth scheme of remembrance, and the incorporation of Britain within New Zealander identity. The Cross of Sacrifice is a feature of all CWGC cemeteries with over forty burials. Designed to represent the faith of the majority, it is a stone cross embedded with a bronze sword, mounted on an octagonal base which varies in size depending on the number of dead commemorated. (24) The memorial is located at the entrance to the Messines Ridge British Cemetery, and the incorporation of the Cross within the memorial serves to anchor this site firmly within British and Commonwealth remembrance; the other three sites, while adjoining CWGC cemeteries, use physical separation to create a distinctly national space.

Of the four memorials analysed here, it is Canada's monument, the Vimy memorial, which presents the strongest assertion of colonial identity. The Vimy memorial is the work of Walter Allward, a Canadian sculptor who won the design competition of the Canadian Battlefields Memorials Commission. (25) Originally a competition to find a design that would be repeated at eight Canadian battlefields, the arresting nature and originality of Allward's concept quickly gave rise to its selection for a single site, which would be Canada's sole national war memorial. (26) Positioned at the height of Vimy Ridge, the twin stone pylons tower (110) metres over the battlefield, (27) surmounted on a massive base inscribed with the names of the missing. This memorial presents a strong Canadian identity: unique among the sites examined, Vimy has a guide program, in which Canadian university students interpret the memorial for visitors. Despite the fact that it is located in France and associated with the CWGC, Vimy is a Canadian National Historic Site and has been maintained solely by the Canadian government since 1938. (28) The largest individual sculpture on the monument highlights specifically Canada's sorrow: the 30-tonne Mother Canada mourning her fallen sons (29) stands in perpetual grief overlooking the plain where they died.

However, alongside this striking representation of a distinct Canadian identity there is a multitude of allegorical sculptures, representing Canada's shared identity with Britain and France based on common values and experiences. This demonstrates the degree to which the newly asserted Canadian identity was still proudly founded on its ties to Britain. The pylons are topped by anthropomorphized Peace and Justice, and other stone figures built into the monument embody Hope, Sacrifice, Charity, Faith, Honour, Knowledge, Truth, and 'Bearing the Torch'. (30) The triumphant idealism of these figures provides a counterpoint to a second type of figural sculpture in the memorial. This latter type represents a shared experience of loss and the requisite desire for peace: groups of sculptures depict 'Sympathy for the Helpless', 'Mourning', and 'The Breaking of the Sword', and silent cannons are draped in sculpted laurel and olive branches to symbolize victory and peace. (31)

These memorials were designed to serve as perennial testaments to remembrance, fixed forever on landscapes that had been awash in horror. Despite their unchanging nature, the way that people understood them was not as static: each individual perception of these sites was shaped by an intersection of personal and collective narratives. It is to these narratives we must turn in order to gain an understanding of the aspects of identity through which conceptions of these sites were filtered.

A pervasive social issue extending from wartime into decades of aftermath was the search for meaning and justification of the war. At the beginning of the conflict, loyalty and debt to Britain were trumpeted as the colonies' rationale for participating, (32) but as the war dragged on the rhetoric of justification grew to encompass the defense of civilization and fundamental principles. (33) From (1916-1918), after the initial surge of volunteers had faded, (34) conscription became a pressing issue, and the catastrophic casualties suffered were used to justify the need for additional soldiers. More men were needed for victory, and if victory were not achieved then the losses already suffered would be in vain. (35) This concept was powerfully reinforced by the poem In Flanders Fields, written by a Canadian and published in Britain in 1915. In the poem's final stanza, the dead soldiers urge society to "take up our quarrel with the foe: to you from failing hands we throw the torch; be yours to hold it high. If ye break faith with us who die, we shall not sleep." (36)

This desperation to avoid a futile perception of the war continued after the victory in 1918. Grieving families had to be assured of the validity of their sons' sacrifices, and memorial construction served as a means to legitimize individual grief; (37) a strong, nearly all-encompassing societal respect for the bereaved prevented alternative critical views from becoming widespread. (38) However, as mourning parents began to die in the 1930s, a dissenting narrative questioning the worth and purpose of these sacrifices became more openly acknowledged. (39) Today, futility rhetoric in connection with contemporary conflicts is perceived as highlighting the bravery of those who fought, not questioning the worth of their sacrifice. (40)

Beginning with their dedications, these three memorials became pilgrimage destinations, within a broader trend of mass battlefield tourism in the 1920s-1930s. (41) The distinction between 'pilgrim' and 'tourist' was generally defined (at least by the pilgrims) in terms of the war's impact: pilgrims were those who had a connection to the site, either through battle experience or the loss of a loved one there. (42) Veterans returned seeking closure, (43) to relive happy memories of the war, (44) to honour fallen comrades, (45) or for any combination of these motives. Their motivations for traveling such great distances to these memorials would have shaped on a personal level the meaning they imbued the sites with. Mourners coming from such great distances wanted to feel connected to the places where their lost ones had died: as such, these sites preserved the battlefield landscape to a much greater degree than British memorials. (46) The journeys undertaken by these identity groups served to reinforce individual identification with them, and to rehearse and perpetuate shared perceptions of the war. Memories are not static: they are shaped and altered over time through reinforcement and rehearsal, and these shared perceptions were those selective and constructed versions of memory which arose out of the plethora of individual experiences. The memorials had to be destinations worthy of this pilgrimage: sites somehow capable of evoking the carnage they had witnessed, despite the sanitized and purified nature of the white stone monuments that had replaced it.

Although unveilings and pilgrimages drew significant attendance from the colonies, the bleak truth remained that these sites would never be seen by most people to whom they were important. Instead, the memorials, and specifically the individual names carved in stone, lived large in people's imaginations as fixed and tangible focuses for their grief. (47) In her novel about the Vimy memorial's construction, Jane Urquhart underscores how these names served as lodestones for personal mourning: "There is absolutely nothing like the carving of names. Nothing like committing to stone this record of someone who is utterly lost." (48) The distance between the memorials and the colonies developed an increased reliance and expectation of the people towards their governments in managing remembrance for them abroad. (49) Stripped of personal agency by geographic separation, focus concomitantly turned inwards to local forms of remembrance, especially in Australia and New Zealand due to the extremity of their geographic separation. (50)

Distance was only one aspect which helped to forge cohesive national identities during the war and its aftermath. Common loss of life, innocence, a generation-created a shared experience which served as a fundamental aspect of each country's identity. In Britain, loss remained the thematic standpoint from which the war was evaluated, (51) but in the colonies this was tempered by a strong sense of achievement. (52) The war was seen as a test successfully passed, (53) inculcating the colonies with national pride in having proved their prowess and independence. (54) These newfound identities were not reactions against Britain. Instead, the ability to have successfully aided Britain was seen as proof of colonial ability, and national unity did not negate loyalty to empire, but rather reduced the degree of subordination in the relationship. (55) However, there was an element of superiority in the colonies' belief that they produced better soldiers than Britain, and colonial soldiers were privileged and idealized (56) to a greater extent than in Britain, where victimhood took precedence in the national narrative. (57)

The memorial sites reflect the sense of national identity created by cohesive military success and loss. Delville Wood was the first major engagement of South African forces on the Western Front, and they held their position despite suffering incredible casualties. (58) Villers-Bretonneux, Vimy, and Messines Ridge were all sites of stunning victories mainly achieved by Australian, Canadian, and New Zealand divisions respectively, occurring in 1917-1918 after the colonies had achieved greater military independence. The battle for Vimy Ridge, for example, was seen as a potent symbol of Canadian identity for its tactical success achieved by all four divisions of the Canadian Corps, fighting together for the first time and under Canadian command which only came about after considerable petitioning over the course of the war. (59) The Australian Imperial Force was eventually able to achieve autonomy from British forces, although they were slower to do so. (60)

National identity was also formulated through shared participation in a secular "cult of the war dead". Termed this by scholars because of parallels with religious practices, it did not replace traditional religion (61) but was a social phenomenon uniting the living in reverence of those who fell. (62) The memorials and their battlefield locations were instinctively treated as sacred places, (63) and the war dead were non-contentious symbols, guaranteed respect and admiration by virtually all segments of society. (64) Even today these sites retain their aura of secular sacredness, as evidenced by the standards of behaviour they evoke (silence, respect, no running), their roles as sites of ritual (remembrance ceremonies) and their function as a depository for offerings of objects imbued with special meaning (wreaths, poppies, photographs, miniature flags).

Respect for soldiers and their sacrifices knit together national identity, but could not dissipate the tension between competing internal identities, as well as strong supranational identifications based on personal experiences of the war. Paradoxically, although the conflict strengthened national unity and independence, it also inflamed or created a multiplicity of identities which fragmented ideals of national unity. Competing veteran groups grappled for membership and control over how the war was remembered and interpreted by ex-servicemen; (65) rival political groups appropriated soldier symbolism to advance their causes, especially during the union labour disputes of the 1930s. (66) Loss or service, or the lack thereof, was used to commend or shame individuals, a trend especially prevalent in politics. (67) Tension also arose over commemoration of South Africa's dead, reflecting ongoing hostility between Afrikaners and Anglo-South Africans. (68) The war sharply divided English and French Canada too; French immigration to Canada had mainly occurred in previous centuries, whereas British immigration was ongoing, and thus French Canadians claimed to be more loyal to Canada than British Canadians, whose obligations were split. (69) This rift was especially evident in the conscription crisis, which resulted in the Military Service Act of 1917. (70) Australia suffered comparable conscription turmoil, although divided along different societal lines. The Irish Catholic community and the powerful trade unions were especially against it, and such a considerable backlash was created that conscription was never introduced. (71)

Less contentious, but significantly impacting self-perceptions, were supranational identity groups that crossed national borders, and arose based on shared wartime experience. The concept of a 'lost generation' was prevalent, (72) and although most soldiers did survive the war, they were 'lost' in another way, as their experiences often alienated them from the home front society. They felt that only other soldiers could understand the sorrows and joys of the war and how these affected their postwar lives. (73) This group was accorded great respect as "the only legitimate interpreters of the war experience" and as a direct connection to the fallen. (74) Another monolithic identity based on wartime experience instead of national allegiance was that of the bereaved: those who had had a loved one die in the war. These mourners were deeply connected to the sites of their loss, and were scornful of battlefield tourists, who they believed did not properly appreciate the significance of the ground they treaded. (75) Their losses afforded them the authority to speak of sacrifice, and elevated them above those whose families had not been personally ravaged by the war. (76) Generally, the bereaved were viewed as a separate group from soldiers, but these identities were not mutually exclusive, and it is important to recognize that many soldiers had also lost loved ones.

As these soldiers aged and the war became an event in the lives of parents and grandparents, these memorials remained as witnesses to successive generations' interactions with the war and its legacy of remembrance. Although intended to be unchanging in form, they were located in a war zone during WWII, most notably resulting in extensive structural damage to Villers-Bretonneux. (77) Time has also ravaged them, with varying degrees of restoration work undertaken in later decades. (78) The motive to fund this work testifies to the important and symbolic place these sites still hold in national identity and memory, and restoration is a tangible bulwark in the fight to preserve the memory of this war against the inevitable fading that time instigates.

As time has passed, changes in memory and perceptions of the war from 1939 to the present have impacted how people perceived the war, remembrance, and the memorials themselves. As WWII erupted, it was realized with sinking hearts that WWI had not been the 'war to end all wars' after all, and this threw the sacrifices of the dead, and thus the consolation of the bereaved, into a very different light. Each generation since 191479 had a distinct set of shared experiences and learned narratives which shaped their relationship to the war; key factors were subsequent conflicts, the age of those who remembered WWI, and the gap between that cohort and the current generation. (80) As time created distance between WWI and the present, individual experiences were to a degree subsumed within a more collective memory of the war, (81) and yet there is still a fascination with individual deaths. (82) Annual commemorative ceremonies at the memorial sites reflect the enduring importance of national remembrance, and the dates chosen demonstrate the unique national significance still attached to the battles these sites represent. (83) As the 100th anniversary of WWI's outbreak approaches, remembrance still has a strong presence within public awareness, and each future generation of these colonies will have their own perceptions of these sites shaped by a combination of collective memory and personal interactions with the war's legacy.

In conclusion, these four memorials allow a complicated and nuanced view of colonial identities as shaped by the Great War, including their relationships to imperial identity. Not always a dichotomy, the colonies often incorporated elements of their British identity within their newfound national self-conceptions. However, behind this projected unity lay disjunctions in colonial identities caused by the war, either through differing experiences of it or based on internal divisions over war-related issues. In consequence, the memorials held varying meanings, reflecting different aspects of grief, experience, and memory for each person. To comprehend how they were perceived through time, we must understand these monuments as sites of hybridity, at which a mix of identities--personal and national, colonial and imperial--have intersected.

Hanna Smyth, University of British Columbia

(1) "Cemetery Details: The South Africa (Delville Wood) National Memorial," Commonwealth War Graves Commission, accessed July 2014, cemetery/4007351/The%20South%20Africa%20(Delville%20 Wood)%20National%20Memorial; G. Kingsley Ward and Edwin Gibson, Courage Remembered: The Story Behind the Construction and Maintenance of the Commonwealth's Military Cemeteries and Memorials of the Wars of 1914-1918 and 1939-1945 (London: H.M.S.O, 1995), 159.

(2) "Cemetery Details: Villers-Bretonneux Memorial," Commonwealth War Graves Commission, accessed July 2014, VILLERS-BRETONNEUX%20 MEMORIAL.

(3) "Cemetery Details: Messines Ridge (N.Z.) Memorial," Commonwealth War Graves Commission, accessed July 2014, MESSINES%20RIDGE%20(N.Z.)%20MEMORIAL.

(4) "Cemetery Details: Vimy Memorial," Commonwealth War Graves Commission, accessed July 2014, http://www.cwgc. org/find-a-cemetery/cemetery/87900/VIMY%20MEMORIAL.

(5) A Dominion was a former British colony that had been granted self-government but could not exercise independent foreign policy. Of the four dominions examined in this article, Canada received this status in 1867, Australia in 1901, New Zealand in 1907, and South Africa in 1910. Throughout this article, the terms 'colony' and 'colonial' will be used in reference to these dominions, for reasons of continuity and simplicity.

(6) Piers Brendon, The Decline and Fall of the British Empire 1781-1997 (London: Jonathan Cape, 2007), 253; H. Duncan Hall, Commonwealth: A History of the British Commonwealth of Nations (London: Van Nostrand Reinhold Company, 1971), 123; Jacqueline Hucker, "'Battle and Burial': Recapturing the Cultural Meaning of Canada's National Memorial on Vimy Ridge," The Public Historian 31, no. 1 (Winter 2009): 90; Mark David Sheftall, Altered Memories of the Great War: Divergent Narratives of Britain, Australia, New Zealand and Canada (London: I.B. Tauris, 2010), 46.

(7) Wood and Swettenham, Silent Witnesses, 5; Bart Ziino, A Distant Grief: Australians, War Graves, and the Great War (Crawley, AUS: University of Western Australia Press, 2007), 3.

(8) Hucker, "Battle and Burial," 94; Ashley Jackson, Distant Drums: The Role of Colonies in British Imperial Warfare (Brighton: Sussex Academic Press, 2010), 6.

(9) Dan Todman, The Great War: Myth and Memory (London: Hambledon Continuum, 2005), 71.

(10) Todman, Great War, 71.

(11) Tanja Luckins, The Gates of Memory: Australian People's Experiences and Memories of Loss and the Great War (Freemantle, AUS: Curtin University Books, 2004), 241.

(12) David W. Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism: Pilgrimage and the Commemoration of the Great War in Britain, Australia, and Canada 1919-1939 (Oxford: Berg, 1998), 26; Ziino, Distant Grief 12, 187.

(13) The full text of the inscription reads "To the Immortal Dead from South Africa, who at the call of duty made the Great Sacrifice on the battlefields of Africa, Asia and Europe and on the Sea, this memorial is dedicated in proud and grateful recognition by their countrymen. Their ideal is our legacy. Their sacrifice our inspiration" (in English and Afrikaans). "Delville Wood: The Memorial," South African Commemorative Museum Trust, accessed July 2014.

(14) "Cemetery Details: The South Africa (Delville Wood) National Memorial," CWGC, accessed July 2014.

(15) "Delville Wood: The Memorial," South African Commemorative Museum Trust, accessed July 2014.

(16) Ibid. Even before its construction, South African authorities drew criticism for their choice of memorial site; only white Anglo-Dutch volunteers had fought at Delville Wood, and the selection of this location as a focus for national remembrance was seen as a dismissal of the sacrifices made by black South Africans, hundreds of whom had died at sea or been involved as Labour Corps auxiliaries in other areas (Bill Nasson,"Delville Wood and South African Great War Commemoration," English Historical Review 119, no. 480 (February 2004): 58, 65).

(17) Interestingly, a South African politician arranged for replicas of this sculpture to be erected prominently in two South African cities, delivering this symbolically loaded message to the colony itself. For further detail on their duplication in Cape Town and Pretoria, see "Delville Wood: The Memorial," South African Commemorative Museum Trust, accessed July 2014, and Jeremy Foster, "Creating a Temenos, Positing 'South Africanism': Material Memory, Landscape Practice and the Circulation of Identity at Delville Wood," Cultural Geography no. 11 (2004): 272.

(18) "Villers-Bretonneux, Australian National Memorial," Department of Veterans' Affairs (Australian Government), accessed July 2014,; Ward and Gibson, Courage Remembered, 161. The full text of this memorial's inscription reads "To the glory of god and in memory of the Australian Imperial Force in France and Flanders 1916-1918 and of eleven thousand who fell in France and have no known grave" (in English and French).

(19) Department of Veterans' Affairs and the Office of Australian War Graves, "Australian National Memorial: Villers-Bretonneux," Brochure P1096 (October 2004), 3-4, accessed July 2014, OAWG/Documents/P01096%20Villers-Bretonneux%20brochure. pdf. For further detail on the design competition and construction process, see Tim Skelton, Lutyens and the Great War (London: Frances Lincoln Ltd., 2008), 140-144.

(20) Contrastingly, Australians missing in Belgium are commemorated along with the names of British forces on the Menin Gate memorial in Ypres.

(21) "Villers-Bretonneux, Australian National Memorial," Department of Veterans' Affairs (Australian Government), accessed July 2014.

(22) "Messines Ridge (New Zealand) Memorial," Belgian Heritage Register, accessed July 2014, https://inventaris.; Ward and Gibson, Courage Remembered, 155. The full text of this memorial's inscription reads "Here are recorded the names of officers and men of New Zealand who fell in or near Messines in 1917 and 1918 and whose graves are known only to God".

(23) "Messines Ridge (New Zealand) Memorial," Belgian Heritage Register, accessed July 2014.

(24) "Our Cemetery Design and Features," Commonwealth War Graves Commission, accessed July 2014, http://www.cwgc. org/about-us/what-we-do/architecture/our-cemetery-design-and-features.aspx; Wood and Swettenham, Silent Witnesses, 12.

(25) "The Monument-Design Competition," Veterans Affairs Canada, accessed July 2014, eng/memorials/france/vimy/sg/04_monument/01_competition. For further detail on the design competition and site selection process, see Hucker, "Battle and Burial," 95-98. The full text of this memorial's inscription reads "To the valour of their countrymen in the Great War and in memory of their sixty thousand dead this monument is raised by the people of Canada" (in English and French).

(26) Jonathan Franklin William Vance, Death So Noble: Memory, Meaning, and the First World War (Vancouver: UBC Press, 1997), 66-67.

(27) "Design and Construction of the Vimy Monument," Veterans Affairs Canada, accessed July 2014, http://www.

(28) The exception to this was the German occupation of the ridge in WWII; see Hucker, "Battle and Burial," 104.

(29) "Design and Construction of the Vimy Monument,"

Veterans Affairs Canada, accessed July 2014.

(30) Ibid.

(31) Ibid.

(32) Brendon, Decline and Fall, 253; Hall, Commonwealth, 126; Jackson, Distant Drums, 8; W.F. Mandle, Going it Alone: Australia's National Identity in the Twentieth Century (Ringwood, AUS: A. Lane, 1978), 15; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 45, 63.

(33) Low, "Spirit of the British Empire," 161, 193; Nasson, "Delville Wood," 62; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 102, 105, 114, 125; Vance, Death So Noble, 20, 27, 31; Ziino, Distant Grief, 17, 185.

(34) The number of British-born colonial men who voluntarily enlisted in the initial stages of war was highly disproportionate to the colonies' general populations. 50% of the men who joined the first surge of enlistment in Australia had been born in Britain (and British-born Australians ultimately accounted for 21% of the Australian Imperial Force); similarly, nearly 50% of South African volunteers had been born in Britain. 20% of enlistees in the New Zealand forces were British-born, and so were 66% of Canada's initial contingent. See Nasson, "Delville Wood," 63; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 51-52; Jay Winter, Remembering War: The Great War Between Memory and History in the Twentieth Century (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2006), 169.

(35) Mark Connelly, The Great War, Memory and Ritual (London: Royal Historical Society, 2002), 1; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 79, 105; Todman, Great War, 129.

(36) John McCrae, "In Flanders Fields," Veterans Affairs Canada, accessed July 2014, eng/remembrance/history/first-world-war/mccrae. Modern conception of the 'torch' is no longer the conflict itself, but rather remembrance of the sacrifice of the dead (Vance, Death So Noble, 201).

(37) Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 175; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 8, 143; Jay Winter, Sites of Memory, Sites of Mourning: The Great War in European Cultural History (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995), 93; Caroline Winter, "Tourism, Social Memory and the Great War," Annals of Tourism Research 36, no. 4 (October 2009): 607.

(38) Todman, Great War, 18, 132, 152.

(39) Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 134, 173; Todman, Great War, 59; Vance, Death So Noble, 7; Ziino, Distant Grief, 8.

(40) Todman, Great War, 121, 152.

(41) Foster, "Creating a Temenos," 271; Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 13-48, 133-179, 181-215; Nasson, "Delville Wood," 81; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 208 note 69; Vance, Death So Noble, 69; Ziino, Distant Grief, 172, 174, 182.

(42) Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 46; Winter, "Tourism, Social Memory," 615-616.

(43) Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 147; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 148.

(44) Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 37.

(45) Nasson, "Deville Wood," 61; John Schofield, Combat Archaeology: Material Culture and Modern Conflict (London: Duckworth, 2005, 95; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 148.

(46) Foster, "Creating a Temenos," 269, 274; Hucker, "Battle and Burial," 101-103; Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 1; Schofield, Combat Archaeology, 45; Vance, Death So Noble, 60. For greater detail on this topic in relation to the Vimy Memorial, see Natalie Bull and David Panton, "Drafting the Vimy Charter for Conservation of Battlefield Terrain," Association for Preservation Technology International Bulletin 31, no. 4, Managing Cultural Landscapes (2000): 5-11, which includes the full text of the charter.

(47) Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 113, 135; Todman, Great War, 69; Winter, Remembering War, 177; Winter, Sites of Memory, 113; Ziino, Distant Grief, 2, 170.

(48) Jane Urquhart, The Stone Carvers (Toronto: M&S, 2001), 347.

(49) Ziino, Distant Grief, 9, 36, 57.

(50) Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 182; Winter, "Tourism, Social Memory," 612; Ziino, Distant Grief, 5.

(51) Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 9; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 2-3, 148, 177; Todman, Great War, 52; Ziino, Distant Grief, 131.

(52) Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 192; Luckins, Gates of Memory, 12; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 182, 185; Vance, Death So Noble, 11.

(53) Sheftall, Altered Memories, 39.

(54) Subsequent progress made by the dominions towards fuller independence may be seen to directly result from this, including the separate seats held by the dominions at the Paris Peace Conference of 1919, the Balfour Declaration of 1926, and the Statute of Westminster of 1931.

(55) Brendon, Decline and Fall, 275, 287; Hall, Commonwealth, 126; Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 205; Mandle, Going it Alone, 23; Nasson, "Deville Wood," 63; Seal, Inventing ANZAC, 123; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 5, 43, 67, 125; Vance, Death So Noble, 175; Winter, Remembering War, 58, 170; Ziino, Distant Grief, 46.

(56) Brendon, Decline and Fall, 265; Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 183, 191, 193; Nasson, "Delville Wood," 58, 61, 69; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 10, 35, 39, 41-42, 86-87, 148, 156, 170-171, 187; Vance, Death So Noble, 232, 234; Wade, "By Diggers Defended," 13, 107-109. An entire book devoted to this phenomenon in the Australian context is Seal, Inventing ANZAC (2004).

(57) Sheftall, Altered Memories, 5, 148; Vance, Death So Noble, 99.

(58) The casualty rate for South African forces in this engagement was approximately 75%. See "Delville Wood: The Memorial," South African Commemorative Museum Trust, accessed July 2014; Foster, "Creating a Temenos," 267.

(59) Brendon, Decline and Fall, 285; Hucker, "Battle and Burial," 90; Lermitte, "Returning to Vimy Ridge," 13; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 6, 76; Vance, Death So Noble, 233; Wood and Swettenham, Silent Witnesses, 61.

(60) Hall, Commonwealth, 174; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 72, 81.

(61) Luckins, Gates of Memory, 91; Ziino, Distant Grief, 21. For greater detail, see "Chapter 2: Christ in Flanders," in Vance, Death So Noble, 35-71.

(62) Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 6; Winter, Remembering War, 26; Ziino, Distant Grief, 2.

(63) Foster, "Creating a Temenos," 268; Hucker, "Battle and Burial," 100; Lermitte, "Returning to Vimy," 13; Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 5; Nasson, "Delville Wood," 67; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 147; Todman, Great War, 69; Vance, Death So Noble, 60, 67; Winter, "Tourism, Social Memory," 611.

(64) Sheftall, Altered Memories, 171-172;.Ziino, Distant Grief, 131.

(65) Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 202; Trdman, GreatWar, 116; Vance, Death So Noble, 127.

(66) Sheftall, Altered Memories, 167; Vanre, Death So Noble, 231.

(67) The former was notably the case for South African politician Percy FitzPatrick, who instigated the Delville Wood memorial (Nasson, "Delville Wood," 65-66), while the latter was true for William Lyon Mackenzie King, Canadian prime minister for several terms in the 1920s-1940s (Vance; Death So Noble, 124).

(68) Nasson, "Delville Wood," 71.

(69) Sheftall, Altered Memories, 97-98; Vance, Death So Noble, 10.

(70) Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 183; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 92-97.

(71) Brendon, Decline and Fall, 273-274; Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 183; Luckins, Gates of Memory, 63; Mandle, Going it Alone, 17-21; Sheftall, Altered Memories, 67;74, 111-112, 114, 117-118.

(72) Mandle, Going it Alone, 22; Sheftall; Altered Memories, 32; Vance, Death So Noble, 241; Winter, Remembering War, 154.

(73) Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 169; Vance, Death So Noble, 127; Ziino, Distant Grief, 7.

(74) Vance, Death So Noble, 223.

(75) Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 7; Winter, "Tourism, Social Memory," 616.

(76) Vance, Death So Noble, 125. Although people of both genders shared the losses of their loved ones, the historical association between women and mourning created the popularly dominant perception of the mourner as mother or widow; see Luckins, Gates of Memory, 16, and Ziino, Distant Grief, 27.

(77) Department of Veterans' Affairs and the Office of Australian War Graves, "Australian National Memorial: Villers-Bretonneux," Brochure P1096 (October 2004), 4-5; "Villers-Bretonneux, Australian National Memorial," Department of Veterans' Affairs (Australian Government), accessed July 2014; Ward and Gibson, Courage Remembered, 161.

(78) For an account of the $20-million restoration of the Vimy memorial 2005-2007, see Andrea Picard, "Restoring Loss At Vimy," The Canadian Architect 51, no. 5 (2006): 74-77.

(79) Dan Todman has identified 5 distinct generations from 1914 onwards: see Todman, Great War, 224-226.

(80) Hucker, "Battle and Burial," 106; Michael Keren, "Introduction," in War Memory and Popular Culture: Essays on Modes of Remembrance and Commemoration, edited by Michael Keren and Holger H. Herwig (Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland, 2009), 1; Lloyd, Battlefield Tourism, 108; Luckins, Gates of Memory, 18, 249-256; Nasson, "Delville Wood," 82; Todman, Great War, 18, 29, 57, 59, 67, 68, 94, 99, 115, 116, 144, 157, 173, 186, 192, 197, 198, 210, 219; Winter, "Tourism, Social Memory," 607608, 613; Ziino, Distant Grief, 132, 190.

(81) Ziino, Distant Grief, 132.

(82) Todman, Great War, 68.

(83) The main ceremonies at Villers-Bretonneux and Messines Ridge are on ANZAC Day (April 25th), a holiday honouring Australian and New Zealand soldiers which falls on the anniversary of both the Gallipoli landings (1915) and the capture of Villers-Bretonneux (1918). At Vimy, April 9th, the day Vimy Ridge was won during the Battle of Arras in 1917, is the primary occasion for ceremony. At Delville Wood, annual commemorations fall in mid-July to coincide with the South Africans' fight to maintain this location in 1916.
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Title Annotation:Special Section: Empire and the Great War
Author:Smyth, Hanna
Publication:World History Bulletin
Article Type:Essay
Geographic Code:4E
Date:Mar 22, 2015
Previous Article:The Anzac myth: history and collective public memory in Australia on the centenary of World War I.

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