From Iwo Jima to the Eastern Front, Normandy to North Africa, The Women Who Wrote the War tells the story of the pioneering female journalists who braved the front lines of World War II and shirked cultural stereotypes regarding women's toughness and professionalism. Through the eyes of these intrepid women, listeners experience the adrenaline of blood-soaked battlefields and the tragedy of loss. Performer Tavia Gilbert projects remarkable versatility as she unearths the unique personalities and circumstances behind these women's manifold anecdotes. Gilbert skillfully intimates her subjects' triumphs, frustrations, sacrifices, and personal relationships as these women of the front are ridiculed, revered, and romanticized by soldierly men, widely of the misguided opinion that war is no place for a woman.
The compelling tale of a hundred brave American women who after leaving their families joined combat-zone fighting during World War II to chronicle and report faithfully back to the States.
Nancy Sorel’s portrait pays homage to these unsung heroes. They came from Boston, New York, Milwaukee, and St. Louis; from Yakima, Washington; Austin, Texas; and Sioux City, Iowa; from San Francisco and all points east. They left comfortable homes and safe surroundings for combat-zone duty. As women war correspondents, they brought to the battlefields of World War II a fresh optic, and reported back home what they witnessed with a new sensibility. Their experience was at once wide-ranging and intimate, devastating at one moment, heartwarming the next.
In this important and timely book, Nancy Sorel eloquently demonstrates the role they played in bringing the war to the folks back home. In their ranks we encounter world-famous photojournalist Margaret Bourke-White, the only western photographer to cover the Nazi invasion of the USSR and among the first to photograph Buchenwald; Martha Gellhhorn, writer and wife of Ernest Hemingway, who reported the menace of fascism from the beginning; Lee Miller, legendary photographer, famously snapped taking a bath in Hitler’s bathtub in 1945; the New Yorker’s Janet Flanner, recording in her "Letter from Paris" the bleak realities of life in post-liberation France; and Marguerite Higgins, who dared enter the concentration camp at Dachau just ahead of the American army. These brave reporters and dozens more formed the crucial link in the long chain of women’s struggle for full equality in a profession hitherto dominated by men.
In her graphic, seamless narrative, Nancy Sorel weaves together the lives and times of these gutsy, incomparable women, assuring them their rightful place in this century’s history.
©1999, 2011 Nancy Caldwell Sorel (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
This book is a non-fiction account of various women war correspondents prior to, during, and immediately following World War 2. There experiences were amazing and inspiring. They struggled to fight their way into jobs that were normally filled by men only. I learned that it was no easy task to get an assignment to cover any part of the war because of their gender. I also learned a great deal about the time period and both the European and Pacific fronts of the war. The fact that the author was able to interview these women about their experience is absolutely priceless. The things these courageous women saw and the stories they were able to write about and photograph must have been etched into their memories for the rest of their lives. In many cases they risked their lives to get the story to the folks back home.
I was sad to see the book end and would love to know more about each woman and what followed after the war because their lives were so altered.
As always, Tavia Gilbert delivers a fabulous performancs as narrator.
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