The Book That Made Me: Philip Reeve 16/10/19
This literary non-fiction book tackles the difficult subject of conscientious objectors during the first World War, relating the true stories of men who believed it was wrong to kill even in times of war.
Handed white feathers and branded as cowards, they were prepared to suffer imprisonment, torture and a firing squad for refusing to obey orders.
There were a total of 16,500 conscientious objectors during the First World War. The 'conchies' as they became known, eventually did recieve a victory of sorts when their prison sentences were commuted to ten years penal servitude in a civil prison and the government were forced to ackknowledge the rights of men to refuse to fight.
This book is ideal to stimulate discussion with pupils at Key Stage 3 on the moral question of whether these men were cowards when they were prepared to die for their beliefs.