Second World War: A Generation of Australian Heroes 1939-1945

Author(s): Richard Pelvin

World War 2 History

The Second World War was an entirely different proposition for Australia from the First World War. The disastrous toll of the 1914-1918 conflict, the shattering of the idealistic schemes for international order that followed it and the presence of a hostile and feared Asian empire close to the north meant that Australians regarded the declaration of war as a grim necessity, not a cause for celebration as in 1914. This beautifully illustrated book is a moving pictorial record of the Second World War as experienced by the Australian men and women who contributed so much. More than 500 rarely seen photographs, historic maps, letters and diaries from the Australian War Memorial archives bring the Second World War to life and create an intimate portrayal of the very human side of battle. Australians fought in North Africa, the Mediterranean, Europe and across the Pacific. In these theatres of war, despite the hardships, the horrors and the loss of life suffered, the inextinguishable bravery, dignity and spirit shown by the Australians make the Second World War one of their greatest endeavours as a nation.


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Born in Melbourne, Richard Pelvin joined the Defence Department in 1969 and moved to Canberra in 1972, working in a number of areas of the department, including ten years in the historical sections of the Army and Navy. From 1997 to 2002 he was Curator of Official Records at the Australian War Memorial. He is now an independent military history researcher and has published a number of articles and papers on military, naval and aviation history as well as writing the renowned Anzac, companion volume to this publication. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Monash University and a Master of Defence Studies from the University of New South Wales. For this book he spent months researching the best photographs from the archives of the Australian War Memorial to tell the story of Australians in the Second World War.

General Fields

  • : 9781742708645
  • : Hardie Grant Books
  • : E2
  • : 1.786
  • : July 2014
  • : 280mm X 255mm
  • : Australia
  • : August 2014
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Richard Pelvin
  • : Hardback
  • : 814
  • : 940.541294
  • : 304
  • : Full colour photography throughout