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The FlyerBritish Culture and the Royal Air Force 1939–1945$
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Martin Francis

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199277483

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199277483.001.0001

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Coming Home

Coming Home

(p.181) 8 Coming Home
The Flyer

Martin Francis

Oxford University Press

This chapter focuses on the flyer's return to civilian life at the end of the war. It argues that, while most former flyers embraced the return to hearth and home, some found the transition problematic, and that the maladjusted flyer is a surprisingly common character in film and literature in the immediate post-war years. It also considers flyers who entered public life after the war, not merely in Britain but, in the case of wartime fighter pilot turned white supremacist Ian Douglas Smith, in Britain's dwindling imperial possessions. The chapter concludes with a brief reflection on how dead comrades continued to cast a shadow over the post-war lives of those who had lived to see the end of hostilities.

Keywords:   public life, Ian Douglas Smith, death, civilian life, film, literature

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