When war came home: air-raid shock in World War I

S.C. Linden*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


During World War I, civilians became a target of the war machine. Air raids transformed the lives of those not involved in active combat and blurred the lines between the home front and the war front. This paper argues that the experience of air raids in World War I was comparable to the combat stress at the Western Front. The author bases her argument on contemporary publications in medical journals, measures taken by British authorities to prevent air-raid shock, and contemporary case records. The narratives of air-raid shock - similarly to those of shell-shocked soldiers - reflect the feelings of terror and loss of control, and demonstrate the profound effect these experiences could have on individuals' mental health.
Original languageEnglish
Article number0957154X21998217
Pages (from-to)289-307
Number of pages19
JournalHistory of Psychiatry
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2021


  • Britain
  • case records
  • psychiatry
  • shell shock
  • trauma
  • war medicine
  • 20th century


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