Officer, Nurse, Woman: The Army Nurse Corps in the Vietnam

Officer, Nurse, Woman: The Army Nurse Corps in the Vietnam I never got a chance to be a girl, Kate O Hare Palmer lamented, thirty four years after her tour as an army nurse in Vietnam Although proud of having served, she felt that the war she never understood had robbed her of her innocence and forced her to grow up too quickly As depicted in a photograph taken late in her tour, long hours in the operating room exhausted her both physically and mentally Her tired eyes and gaunt face reflected th e weariness she felt after treating countless patients, some dying, some maimed, all, like her, forever changed Still, she learned to work harder and faster than she thought she could, to trust her nursing skills, and to live independently She developed a way to balance the dangers and benefits of being a woman in the army and in the war Only fourteen months long, her tour in Vietnam profoundly affected her life and her beliefs Such vivid personal accounts abound in historian Kara Dixon Vuic s compelling look at the experiences of army nurses in the Vietnam War Drawing on thaninterviews, Vuic allows the nurses to tell their own captivating stories, from their reasons for joining the military to the physical and emotional demands of a horrific war and postwar debates about how to commemorate their serviceVuic also explores the gender issues that arose when a male dominated army actively recruited and employed the services of , nurses in the midst of a growing feminist movement and a changing nursing profession Women drawn to the army s patriotic promise faced disturbing realities in the virtually all male hospitals of South Vietnam Men who joined the nurse corps ran headlong into the army s belief that women should nurse and men should fight Officer, Nurse, Woman brings to light the nearly forgotten contributions of brave nurses who risked their lives to bring medical care to soldiers during a terrible and divisive war

10 thoughts on “Officer, Nurse, Woman: The Army Nurse Corps in the Vietnam War

  1. Evelyn Evelyn says:

    tough read, a lot of repetition, reads like a textbook, would have been farinteresting if she focused on the nurses stories, that was the best part when she all too briefly told a snipet of what they experienced.

  2. Clarissa Sanders Clarissa Sanders says:

    Kara Vuic is a great writer and an even better historian She cares about the women who served in Vietnam and uses Officer, Nurse, Woman as a venue to give them a voice within the girl of academic History I really miss having her at Bridgewater

  3. Jeff Jeff says:

    This is an excellent social history of the nurse corps in Viet Nam Kara Vuic nee Dixon has provided a qualitative historical account of the lived experiences of the nurses in country.

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