The First World War: trauma and memory
The First World War: trauma and memory

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The First World War: trauma and memory

1.1.4 Casualties summary

Described image
Figure 4 Rows of bones gathered following the Battle of Chunuck Bair, Gallipoli.

In this first part of the course, you have considered some of the physical injuries suffered by soldiers of the First World War, and some of the treatments that were developed by the medical profession to deal with huge numbers of casualties.

You’ve also learned why casualty figures can vary greatly from source to source, and thought about how historians have been revising casualty figures over the last few years. The true extent of the losses will never be fully known, but it is clear that casualties were even higher than was previously suspected. Statistically speaking, recent estimates suggest that around 6,000 soldiers died per day during the First World War.

You will now move on to another aspect of considering casualties in the First World War: ‘shell shock’ and mental trauma.

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