The years of World War I, 1914-1918, were years of change for Canada. Canada made a place for itself in world affairs, and the country found its stride. Women in Canada too found their stride, making significant contributions to Canada’s war efforts, and becoming fully engaged in the social, economic, political and cultural life of the country. Canada and the place of women, in all their diversity of origin, race and class, would be transformed by the actions of women and like-minded men.
It Was Their War Too, by Pat Staton, is a unique book that brings these women and their contributions alive and connects them to the present. Written for students and the general reader, the book richly sets the background, tells the stories of the times through the voices of the women themselves, and brings the period to life with stunning visuals. This book is not a memorial to war. It is a doorway to understanding the critical, but often invisible, contributions made to the 20th century development of Canada by women. It includes suggested student activities and a resource list for further exploration.
Even though women were prohibited in these war years from doing everything that men could do, they pushed every boundary to contribute. This book tells the stories of what they did and how they did it, showing their day to day choices and their dreams, their sorrows and their joys – and the sheer life they brought to everything they did.
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Pat Staton is an accomplished educator, author, activist and publisher. She focuses on equity in education, curriculum development, women’s history, women and work, anti-racist education, harassment in the schools and supported housing for people with disabilities.
Her works on women’s history, all published by Green Dragon Press, include: Claiming Women's Lives: History & Contemporary Studies: Grade 7-0AC.
(1994); Unfolding Power: Documents in 20th Century Canadian Women’s History (2004), with Rose Fine Meyer and Stephanie Gibson; and, Toronto Women: A Walk Through History (2012).
Pat is a co-founder of the Ontario Women’s History Network. A printmaker and an artist by avocation, Pat has produced annual women’s history posters for OWHN and the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario.