Nella Last's War: The Second World War Diaries of 'Housewife, 49' Book

Nella Last was a volunteer with the Mass Observation Archive during World War II. When war broke out Nella's youngest son joined the army and the rest of the family just had to get on with civilian life on the Home Front. Nella, a housewife in the bombed town of Barrow, kept a diary throughout the war which was published in 1981 as "Nella Last's War: A Mother's Diary, 1939-45" and has now been republished as "Nella Last's War: The Second World War Diaries of 'Housewife 49'". Nella's record of events offers a rare look into the realities of war on the Home Front. This is the first of two extracts and revolves around Nella's views on mainly private events and is an enthralling female perspective on the war years. Read More

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  • Amazon

    In September 1939, housewife and mother Nella Last began a diary whose entries, in their regularity, length and quality, have created a record of the Second World War which is powerful, fascinating and unique. When war broke out, Nella's younger son joined the army while the rest of the family tried to adapt to civilian life.

  • Play

    In September 1939 housewife and mother Nella Last began a diary whose entries in their regularity length and quality have created a record of the Second World War which is powerful fascinating and unique. When war broke out Nella's younger son joined the army while the rest of the family tried to adapt to civilian life. Writing each day for the 'Mass Observation' project Nella a middle-aged housewife from the bombed town of Barrow shows what people really felt during this time. This was the period in which she turned 50 saw her children leave home and reviewed her life and her marriage - which she eventually compares to slavery. Her growing confidence as a result of her war work makes this a moving (though often comic) testimony which covering sex death and fear of invasion provides a new unglamorised female perspective on the war years. 'Next to being a mother I'd have loved to write books' - Oct 8 1939.

  • Blackwell

    In 1939, housewife and mother Nella Last began a diary whose entries, in their regularity, length, and quality, have created a record of WWII. This is a moving testimony, that, covering sex, death, and fear of invasion, provides a new...

  • Pickabook

    Nella Last, Trustees of the Mass Observation Archives, Richard Broad (Editor)

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