Laugesen, Amanda: Furphies and Whizz-bangs

Laugesen, Amanda

Furphies and Whizz-bangs: Anzac Slang from the Great War, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, 2014

Furphies and Whizz-bangs: Anzac Slang from the Great War tells the story of the First World War through an examination of the slang used by Australian soldiers. Drawing on a range of primary source material taken from soldiers’ letters, diaries and trench publications, along with contemporary newspapers and books, the language of the Australian soldiers is brought to life. From the language soldiers used to make sense of military life, to the slang of the trenches, to the words of the home front, this book illuminates the cultural and social worlds of Australian soldiers. It tells us of the everyday grumblings of the soldiers, the horrors of the battlefield, and the humour they used as they tried to endure the war. Also included are chapters on the slang of the Australian Flying Corps and the Royal Australian Navy, and place names used by soldiers. (blurb)

Paul Daley, author and journalist with Guardian Australia, reviews the book for Honest History.

Two years on, Howard Manns looks at the slang used in a different sort of warfare, political campaigns.

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