This detailed drawing by a child called Hubert, who was probably about 13 years old, shows the destruction of an unknown village. It is summer. The crops are mature and poppies grow in the fields. In the foreground is a river and to the left a cannon, which was probably used in the destruction of the village. In the background houses are burning and a thick cloud of black smoke rises, blotting out the sky. In addition to the title ‘durch feindeshand’, done by the enemy, we can see the name of the school, the student and the teacher’s stamp.In addition to posters, leaflets, postcards, newspapers and many other documents concerning the war, school essays and children’s drawings were also collected and sent to the Imperial Library in Vienna. The drawings reflect the influence of war propaganda on children. The labels on the drawings indicate that the pupils were told to draw their impressions of the war as part of a lesson. Probably because of the contemporary news coverage and narratives, the pictures are impressively imaginative. This drawing comes from the Franz Josef Secondary Vocational School in Graz, Styria.
- Article by:
- Stacy Gillis, Emma Short
Drs Stacy Gillis and Emma Short draw on surviving schoolwork and propaganda to explore how World War One affected all aspects of children’s lives.
- Article by:
- Ian Cooke
Curator Ian Cooke discusses the ways in which propaganda influenced children’s perceptions of World War One, encouraging them to develop particular values and to contribute to the war effort.