La Revue des marraines (1916–17): A Journal for War Godmothers and their Godchildren

Marysa Demoor, Birgit Van Puymbroeck, Marianne Van Remoortel


This article is situated at the crossroads of First World War and periodical studies. It sheds light on the phenomenon of ‘war godmothers’ [‘marraines’], women who supported soldiers at the front by sending them parcels and letters. The so-called godmothers made use of the mainstream press to advertise their services, and founded periodicals of their own. In this article, we examine the representation of war godmothers in the periodical press and uncover La Revue des marraines, a handwritten journal created by the Melles Picard in Paris. The analysis addresses the little-known phenomenon of the war godmothers, the relation between godmother and godson, and changing gender roles. It further questions the importance of handwritten journals during the war, when paper and other means were scarce.


First World War, war godmother, La Revue des marraines, trench journals, gender

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Copyright (c) 2017 Marysa Demoor, Birgit Van Puymbroeck, Marianne Van Remoortel

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