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Our Glory and Our Grief: Torontonians and the Great War (Book Review Sample)


The task was reviewing the book "Our Glory and Our Grief: Torontonians and the Great War"

HISTORY YourFirstName YourLastName Course Title August 16, 2014
The Great War
The Great War Ian Hugh Maclean Miller in the book "Our Glory and Our Grief: Torontonians and the Great War" reflects on sacrifices that were made by the people of Toronto during the First World War. The author also examines the history of Toronto before the war and the reasons that led to the war. Miller through this book shows how the life was in the city of Toronto before, during, and after the Great War. The life in the city was marked with cerebrations after the soldiers defeated the militias but this was short-lived as the city residence would later learn of the sacrifices made by the soldiers during the war . On the other hand, Tim Cook in the article "The politics of Surrender: Canadian Soldiers and the Killing of Prisoners in the Great War", discusses on the act of surrender during the great war by the German soldiers to the Canadian soldiers. This article also examines the reasons that led to the soldiers to surrender to their opponents. Additionally, the article describes the suffering that the soldiers underwent during this war . For instance, it was observed that those soldiers who were willing to negotiate for their freedom and surrendered were spared unlike those who failed to apply the “Politics of Surrender”. This article also discusses the fate of the soldiers who surrendered. The interpretation of these two readings is different due to a number of reasons. First, whereas the Miller’s book discusses the effects of the war on the people of Toronto, Cook’s article focuses on the plight of the soldiers. Secondly, the Miller’s book explores the glory of the Canadians and the casualties suffered during this war. The Cook’s article discusses suffering of both the Canadian and the German soldiers. However, the two leading are similar since they both discuss several reasons that led to the war. There are various reasons why these two readings have come to different conclusions. Miller’s reading concludes that the people of Toronto viewed the war differently after they received the news on the victory of their soldiers and the same time received news on the cost of the war. Despite winning the war, around 6,000 Canadian soldiers had lost their lives. For this reason, the people of Toronto were united in mourning their fallen soldiers. Many volunteered in helping the soldiers and their families. The idea of political surrendering was introduced in order to avoid such an occurrence during the war. Therefore, the availability of information on the situation in the battlefield helped in encouraging the public support the war although some thought it was not right. Cook’s conclusion offers an analysis on the suffering of the captured soldiers. He notes that those who freely surrendered to their captors were better than those who refused to surrender. The author also concludes that the soldiers who surrendered had no other choice than surrender because they had observed their colleagues being killed for failing to surrender. On the other hand, the captured soldiers were treated as the enemies and they suffered more because their capturers believed that they were to blame for the cost of the war. Lastly, the two readings have come to different conclusions because they both discuss different subjects. Whereas the main topic on the Miller’s book is on moment of glory and suffering for the people of Toronto during the Great War, Cook’s article focuses mainly on the suffering of the captured soldiers on the hands of their captors. Primary sources are utilized when the author collects firsthand information from the field. On the other hand, secondary sources entail collection of information from other sources such as books and news articles. These two readings utilize the secondary sources. However, Miller’s book focuses more on primary sources than secondary sources. The author relies more on the newspaper articles that were used to pass information to the people of Toronto during the war. For instance, Miller uses an article from ‘Globe’ on 10th July 1915 to note that 1, 000 men from Toronto had been recruited to the army. Another example of application of primary sources by Miller is the conclusion that the call by the media encouraging people to enlist as soldiers had was one of the key factors that led to success. This was documented in the ‘World’ on 7th July 1915 and ‘News’ 8th July 1915. Lastly, most of the people mentioned in this book were interviewed thereby offering the author firsthand information. Cook’s article on the other hand mainly uses secondary sources to do...
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