By Nathan Wise
Anzac Labour explores the horror, frustration and exhaustion surrounding operating lifestyles within the Australian Imperial strength throughout the First global struggle. in keeping with letters and diaries of Australian infantrymen, it strains the background of labor and place of work cultures via Australia, the beaches of Gallipoli, the fields of France and Belgium, and the close to East.
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Additional info for Anzac Labour: Workplace Cultures in the Australian Imperial Force during the First World War
Newspapers reported on the death of a soldier at Sydney’s Central Station, of shops raided and of soldiers behaving violently. In the historical literature the Liverpool-Sydney protest has been remembered as a catalyst for ‘early closing’ in public houses,84 and as a preferably forgotten taint on the Anzac Legend. Yet in the context of this book it assists in understanding that approaches towards military service as a job of work also entailed approaches towards unfair working conditions through industrial action.
41 Most telling in this quote is the scarcity of ‘any other inﬂuence’ prior to enlisting in the military. The Australians had no deeply rooted military history or military culture. 43 In their approach towards ofﬁcers, towards daily work and towards the military regimen, these men actively shaped the new traditions and culture of the AIF. 45 As noted, many of these men had enlisted for a temporary term of employment and they eagerly looked forward to the end of the war and a return to their civilian lives.
Unlike British units, some with traditions stretching back for centuries,38 the Australian units had no proud military history of their own to look back on. 39 Indeed, the main cultural traits that the Boer War veterans carried over to the First World War were senses of irreverence, independence and Civilian to Soldier 19 larrikinism,40 characteristics that quickly formed part of the core culture of the Australian soldier in the First World War. The result of this lack of military tradition or ethos was that most Australian men who enlisted into the rank-and-ﬁle of the AIF formed new collective understandings of what soldiering entailed, and they subsequently lived by those understandings.