Article ID: CBB001212413

Black Nurses in the Great War: Fighting for and with the American Military in the Struggle for Civil Rights (2012)


Patterson, Andrea (Author)

Canadian Journal of History
Volume: 47, no. 3
Issue: 3
Pages: 545-566

Black nurses in the Great War waged a campaign for acceptance into the American Red Cross and U.S. military that blended professionalism with race consciousness in ways that would be felt ever since. This article challenges the traditional interpretation of this struggle as one of professional frustration and racial discrimination, and instead argues that the black nurses' protest expanded their role as political activists. Black nurses saw themselves not only as health care professionals, but also as dedicated civil rights fighters. Their battle against the white power structure encouraged others to demand increased opportunities and responsibilities. It also transformed the postwar environment, particularly in the field of public health. Finally, black nurses' campaign for acceptance during World War I served as an important foundational movement. While not all of their goals were accomplished, black nurses developed many of the strategies later used during a similar campaign in World War II.[ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]

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Authors & Contributors
Hallett, Christine E.
Lee, Janet
Telford, Jennifer Casavant
Collins, Sibrina N.
Irwin, Julia F.
Heap, Ruby
Canadian Bulletin of Medical History/Bulletin Canadienne d'Histoire de la Medecine
Women's History Review
Bulletin for the History of Chemistry
Bulletin of the History of Medicine
Journal of American History
Social History of Medicine
Manchester University Press
Oxford University Press
University of Ottawa (Canada)
University of Toronto
Rutgers University Press
Routledge/Taylor & Francis Group
World War I
Nurses and nursing
African Americans
African Americans and science
Medicine and the military; medicine in war
Civil rights
Goodrich, Annie
United States
Ohio (U.S.)
Appalachian region (North America)
20th century, early
20th century
20th century, late
19th century
Progressive Era (1890s-1920s)
American Red Cross
Rockefeller Foundation
Young Men's Christian Association, World’s Committee (Genewa)
Boy scouts of America

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