Jewish Museum - London

For King and Country?

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The Jewish Experience of the First World War
Past exhibition

To commemorate the centenary of the First World War, the Jewish Museum London and Jewish Military Museum are delighted to announce For King and Country? a major new exhibition exploring the Jewish experience of the First World War.

Over 50,000 Jewish soldiers fought for Britain during the First World War, sharing in the horror and loss experienced by the whole country. This exhibition will tell personal stories of loyalty and service while uncovering narratives of those who didn’t fight. It will also look at the lives of the British Jews who experienced war away from the battlefield.

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The exhibition will explore how war threw into question what it meant to be a British Jew. We will tell the stories of why Jewish soldiers decided to serve and of the struggle to keep faith while fighting in the trenches. These personal stories will be explored within the wider context of divided loyalties, integration and Zionism which were all under debate at the time.

By exploring the stories of individuals in their own words who served on the battlefields or back in Britain the exhibition will bridge the last hundred years and allow us to understand the motivations of the Jews involved. The visitor will hear the heart-felt words of Second Lieutenant Marcus Segal as he wrote to his parents from the front-line; they will hear the poems of Isaac Rosenberg and understand his internal conflict as a Jewish soldier; and the diary entries of Florence Oppenheimer as she fought to save men’s lives on a military hospital ship.

Find out more about the Jewish Museum and Jewish Military Museum partnership here

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Related Events

This exhibition will be accompanied by an exciting and wide-ranging programme of events at the Museum.
Click here to find out more.