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Instructions for American Servicemen in Britain, 1942: Reproduced from the original typescript, War Department, Washington, DC (Instructions for Servicemen) [Hardcover]

By Bodleian Library, J. De Waard (Editor), J. P. Fokkelman (Editor), Irene Dunlap (Compiler), Julian Lewis, Honey Naylor (Contributor), Becky Freeman & B. Teissier (Editor)
Our Price $ 8.49  
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Item Number 320192  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   48
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.5" Width: 4.25" Height: 6.25"
Weight:   0.2 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Sep 1, 2004
Publisher   Bodleian Library, University of Oxford
ISBN  1851240853  
EAN  9781851240852  


Availability  0 units.


Item Description...
In 1942, the United States War Department distributed a handbook to American servicemen that advised them on the peculiarities of the "British, their country, and their ways." Over sixty years later, this newly published reproduction from the rich archives of the Bodleian Library offers a fascinating glimpse into American military preparations for World War II.

The guide was intended to alleviate the culture shock for soldiers taking their first trip to Great Britain, or, for that matter, abroad. The handbook is punctuated with endearingly nostalgic advice and refreshingly candid quips such as: "The British don't know how to make a good cup of coffee. You don't know how to make a good cup of tea. It's an even swap." By turns hilarious and poignant, many observations featured in the handbook remain relevant even today.

Reproduced in a style reminiscent of the era, Instructions for American Servicemen in Britain is a powerfully evocative war-time memento that offers a unique perspective on the longstanding American-British relationship and reveals amusingly incisive American perceptions of the British character and country.




Buy Instructions for American Servicemen in Britain, 1942: Reproduced from the original typescript, War Department, Washington, DC (Instructions for Servicemen) by Bodleian Library, J. De Waard, J. P. Fokkelman, Irene Dunlap, Julian Lewis, Honey Naylor, Becky Freeman & B. Teissier from our Christian Books store - isbn: 9781851240852 & 1851240853

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More About Bodleian Library, J. De Waard, J. P. Fokkelman, Irene Dunlap, Julian Lewis, Honey Naylor, Becky Freeman & B. Teissier

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Product Categories
1Books > Special Features > New & Used Textbooks > Humanities > History > Europe   [2054  similar products]
2Books > Special Features > New & Used Textbooks > Humanities > History > United States   [2549  similar products]
3Books > Subjects > History > Americas > United States > 20th Century > General   [2198  similar products]
4Books > Subjects > History > Americas > United States > General   [15836  similar products]
5Books > Subjects > History > Europe > England > General   [11650  similar products]
6Books > Subjects > History > Military > World War II > General   [2794  similar products]



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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Remember, they have been at war since 1939  Mar 9, 2008
This eight page typescript contains an enormous amount of information. And, over 60 years later, it contains a great deal of entertainment for my British friends. It's fun to share with friends in this country as well.

"You will naturally be interested in getting to know your opposite number, the British soldier, the `Tommy' you have heard and read about. You can understand that two actions on your part will slow up the friendship - swiping his girl, and not appreciating what his army has been up against. Yes, and rubbing it in that you are better paid than he is."

On courage: "Don't be misled by the British tendency to be soft- spoken and polite. If they need to be, they can be plenty tough. The English language didn't spread across the oceans and over the mountains and jungles and swamps of the world because these people were panty-waists."

On servicewomen: "Now you understand why British soldiers respect the women in uniform. They have won the right to utmost respect. When you see a girl in khaki . . . with a bit of ribbon on her tunic - remember she didn't get it for knitting more socks than anyone else in Ipswich."

"Let this be your slogan: It is always impolite to criticize your hosts. it is militarily stupid to criticize your allies."

The advice about not criticizing your hosts is great advice for any traveler, military or civilian. I found the pamphlet an interesting bit of cultural and military history.

Robert C. Ross 2008
 
Funny slice of history  Aug 11, 2005
There's an old saying: "It is always impolite to criticize your hosts; it is militarily stupid to criticize your allies." No kidding. Which is why, in 1942, when the Americans took up residence in Britain, a seven-page long pamphlet was distributed, essentially to help the Yanks understand their British "cousins."

Little did they know that those seven pages, some six decades later, would be read aloud on bus routes in London as amusing historical relics for the entertainment of passengers.

Short, sweet, and hysterically funny to the modern ear, this books gives a very good view of how Americans saw the British people, both during WW2 and even now, by comparing how we saw them then to how we see them today. The book goes into everything, using clear language and astonishing detail for all its length: sports, weights and measures, monetary units, rationing. Some of the instructions bring home the fact that America was itself a drastically different place sixty years ago; some of it brings into stark relief that by the time the US entered the war, Britain had been involved for over two years already.

But perhaps what makes it so funny now is the language itself, since phrases have changed so drastically in the last sixty years, something quite ironically stated in the first few pages: "The British have phrases and colloquialisms of their own that may sound funny to you. You can make just as many boners in their eyes...."

Indeed.
 

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