Research in Brief – Children of the Great War film installation

In a previous post, Michael Roper wrote about the screening of the Children of the Great War installation film. You can now view that film in full below.

As Michael explained,

The film was shown on a wide screen, with two images that ran simultaneously: one in colour, showing war landscapes and photos of war memorabilia, the other in grainy black-and-while featuring stills and video footage of the interviewees. The black and white images encourage a mood of reflection about the stories being told, and the combination of faces and interviewee makes you think about the connections between family stories and the wider historical context. Each story lasts between 5 to 10 minutes, and the transition between frames is slow, with blank white space between segments, which again encourages contemplation.

The film features global as well as British legacies of the war. It begins with the descendant of an Afro-Caribbean soldier, who holds in the palm of her hand a small and crumpled image of her father taken from a locket. Another interviewee was the descendant of a Jewish German soldier who had served in the First World War and who hoped his service medals – shown in the film – would save him from being rounded up by the Nazis. Although the family managed to pay off officials and get their father released from concentration camp, escaping to Britain in 1938, his father suffered many breakdowns afterwards.



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