'Male Attitudes Are Central To The Story Of New Zealand's War Nurses',
Anna Rogers. Discuss.
Anna Rogers has argued that 'male attitudes are central to the story of New Zealand's war nurses, this however, is not completely accurate. Gendered attitudes, those composed of both male and female counterparts, have a more influential and greater role to play in the experiences of New Zealand's war nurses. Gender is inseparable from culture, and it is in times of war that culture is tested, brought to the forefront to become most evident. Gender attitudes are present in military nursing through the continued presence of the Nightengale ethos in both World War's One and Two, which in turn built a real sense of duty felt by the nurses, exuding a strong compulsion to be a part of the war effort. Pressure to conform to the ideals of society also reciprocated the same response, whilst both Government and military aimed at reinforcing the gender roles present in society.
Also the gendering of war nursing as a means of exploitating a cheap labour force is another important factor to be looked at, as is the strength in which the gender hierarchy was reinforced and the logic begind it, whilst finally examining both the opportunity war posed to the nurses and the psychological detriment behind participating it, both of which are highly gendered. These factors are being looked at to display how war nursing was intertwined with gender bias typical of the culture at the time of the World Wars.
Nurses were expected to conform to the Nightengale ethos to 'set such a standard of excellence that only the best can hope to attain to it'. There are several accounts in the April 1915 edition of Kai Tiaki New Zealand Nursing Journal that elaborate the importance the...