Bonjour, à tous! Saturday was a pretty exciting day for me, as I finally got the chance to meet the other Young Ambassadors and learn all about our upcoming trip and Shared Histories project!
While the other nine ambassadors from around NZ were catching early bird flights, I rolled out of bed at 8 and took a leisurely bus ride to the Alliance Française. After initial greetings and a bit of discussion regarding the trip and our blog posts, we headed over to the Dominion Museum for a guided tour of their Great War Exhibition. While I started the day with almost no prior knowledge of the events of World War 1, I left the exhibition with a totally fresh perspective. I learned all about the war and how France, New Zealand and other countries were affected, and it really put the idea of conflict and combat in perspective for me. We see war being depicted as a patriotic extravaganza, with soldiers graciously sacrificing their lives for the sake of their countries. However, the exhibit helped me see the truly horrible side to war that is often breezed over. I came face to face with the cold, dank horrors of the trenches, where soldiers would wait for months surrounded by the bodies of their dead friends. I saw recreations of the massive tanks designed purely to crush entire army bases and whoever occupied them. The amount of detail and information put into the exhibit helped my fellow ambassadors and I realize that sometimes, war isn’t always a tale of bravery and victory, it comes hand in hand with tragedy and death!
Despite this quite sad realization, the exhibition did give me an idea of what I want to focus on for my Shared Histories project. I noticed the lack of information the museum had about how the war affected women. As there were no female soldiers in World War 1, women were given background jobs such as nursing for the Red Cross. Many women experienced the war second hand, having to deal with mentally and physically injured soldiers returning from battle. They had to take up jobs that their husbands had previously held and care for their families single-handedly without another adult at home. For my project, I would like to focus on this side of the story, and capture the lives of women from various countries (particularly France and NZ) during the time of the war.
Je ne peux pas attendre pour commencer!
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Last modified on Tuesday, 28 June 2016 06:58