'The Good Fellow': Negotiation, Remembrance, and Recollection - Homosexuality in the British Armed Forces, 1939–1945

Title'The Good Fellow': Negotiation, Remembrance, and Recollection - Homosexuality in the British Armed Forces, 1939–1945
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsVickers, Emma
EditorHerzog, Dagmar
Book TitleBrutality and Desire: War and Sexuality in Europe's Twentieth Century
Pagination109–134
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
CityBasingstoke, UK
Abstract

This chapter explores the sexual politics toward gay soldiers in the British army during World War II. The year 1967 marked a watershed in English law. Twenty-two years after the end of the Second World War, homosexuality was decriminalised in England and Wales by the Sexual Offences Act. Prior to the introduction of the new legislation, the hero of Alamein, Field Marshall Bernard Montgomery, urged the House of Lords not to sanction the legislation. Montgomery could not slow the momentum of the civil law nor the rumours that he himself was a homosexual, his concerns were shared by policy-makers within the Armed Forces. Indeed military chiefs and the Wolfenden committee agreed that decriminalising homosexual acts in the forces would affect discipline and threaten the safety of lowranking servicemen. As a result, homosexual acts remained punishable by military law even though they were made legal for civilian men over the age of 21.

Entry by GWC Assistants / Work by GWC Assistants : 

Type of Literature:

Library Location: 
Call Number: 
233813765

Library: