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Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Death or Deliverance

Canadian Courts Martial in the Great War

Soldiers found guilty of desertion or cowardice during the Great War faced death by firing squad. Novels, histories, movies, and television series often depict courts martial as brutal and inflexible, and social memories of this system of frontline justice have inspired modern movements to seek pardons for soldiers executed on the battlefield. In this powerful and moving book, Teresa Iacobelli looks beyond stories of callous generals and quick executions to consider the trials of nearly two hundred soldiers who were sentenced to death but spared by a disciplinary system capable of thoughtful review and compassion. By bringing to light these men’s experiences, Death or Deliverance reconsiders an important chapter in the history of both a war and a nation.


Table of Contents

Introduction

1 Competing Ideologies

2 Military Law: An Overview

3 The Crimes

4 The Court Martial Process

5 The Confirmation Process

6 The Campaign for Pardons

Conclusion

Notes; Bibliography; Index

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