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Abstract

Since the end of the Second World War some 70 years ago, research and scholarship featuring wartime contributions of the average British citizenhasfocused largely on men's experiences of combat, the various roles of government agencies, or the assumed viability and tenacity of political and military leaders. The role of gender in the experience of war was often a side-note, not a focus of research. Since the 1960s, and more frequently since the late 1980s, a new wartime perspective has begun to be documented and explored in academic and literary scholarship - that of British women.

This study examines primary materials located in the Women's Library at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) that document the first-hand wartime experiences of British women. A brief overview of the Women's Library and existing publications related to its collections of primary documents related to women and the Second World War will also be addressed. Summaries of key primary materials, the ability of these materials to expand knowledge of existing women’s wartime narratives, and their usefulness to future research endeavors will also be included.