First World War remembered

University staff and students are taking part in a range of events to mark 100 years since the outbreak of the First World War.

The events, which will take place over the next four years, aim to offer fresh insight into the conflict.

They will also reflect upon the impact of the Great War on the people of Scotland and the wider world.

Centenary programme

Keep up to date with University events exploring the impact of the First World War.

First World War Centenary Programme

Scotland’s History Festival

The University is a sponsor of Previously... Scotland’s History Festival, which takes place from 12 to 30 November throughout Scotland.

As part of the festival, the University and Surgeons’ Hall Museums will present a new exhibition in Leith Library - War and Deeds, Weapons and Wounding - developed by historian Yvonne McEwen.

The exhibition will explore women’s role in warfare, highlight developments in weaponry and examine the medical techniques used to cope with wounding during the Great War.

History research student Patrick Watt will also deliver a lecture as part of the festival on 29 November. He will discuss the 4th Cameron Highlanders and their role in the Great War.

Music and film

Celtic and Scottish Studies has also organised lectures on 7 and 14 November, offering unique insight into the sounds of the trenches and ways war is commemorated through modern Scots song.

As part of the University’s ongoing partnership with Edinburgh Filmhouse, Professor Jolyon Mitchell of the University’s School of Divinity, will introduce a film screening of Wooden Crosses. The film chronicles life in the trenches, following the story of a student who enlists when war breaks out.

The Edinburgh University Music Society Chorus winter concert on 14 November also reflects on themes of war and peace through music - from Haydn’s interpretation in the 18th century, to Edinburgh composer Ken Johnston’s in the 21st.

Scotland's War

Scotland's War is an initiative organised by Yvonne McEwen, which will see the University work with a range of organisations.

These include the National Library of Scotland, the Scottish Military Research Group and local schools and libraries - and will seek to raise awareness of untold stories from the First World War.

As part of the project, the Edinburgh Central Library will host an exhibition and a number of talks from 10 to 14 November to highlight the story of Scotland’s War blind in the conflict.

During this time the Centre of Canadian Studies will also host an exhibition on the legacy of Scotland’s relationship with Canadian forces, which began in 1916. Yvonne McEwen will lecture on the topic on 13 November.

Nursing and the Great War

Nursing Studies at the University is also working in partnership with Napier University to stage a lecture and one-day conference, which has nursing as its theme.

Professor Christine Hallett, Professor at the University of Manchester and Director of the UK Centre for the History of Nursing, will deliver the free evening lecture - With nerve and heart and mind: nursing the emotional wounds of the First World War - at Napier University on 22 November.

There is also a conference on Friday, 21 November at Napier University to discuss nurses’ work throughout WW1.

Keynote lectures will be delivered by University of Edinburgh historians Professor Douglas Cairns and Yvonne McEwen. Workshops will be held on a number of topics, including talking about trauma, creative methods for understanding history and reading nurses’ memoirs. Tickets cost £50.

Related Links

University Centenary Programme

Previously… Scotland’s History Festival

Scotland's War

Centre for the Study of Modern Conflict

Nursing conference to commemorate WW1

Celtic and Scottish Studies

Edinburgh University Press

Filmhouse Cinema Edinburgh

Edinburgh University Chorus Winter Concert