The sheer horror of trench warfare was too much for some soldiers to cope with. More and more men were diagnosed with a condition called shell shock. The films on this page show some of the symptoms of this illness - including paralysis and panic attacks - and some of the methods used by doctors to try to cure it.
15 MINS 4 SECS, SILENT, B/W, 1917 AND 1918
Contains distressing footage.
Key Section - Beginning to 4:12.
This film, entitled War Neuroses, was shot at Netley Hospital in 1917 and Seale Hayne Military Hospital in 1918. It details the treatment of various soldiers suffering from shell shock. Made before the advent of sound, the film is silent.
1 MIN 17 SECS, SILENT, B/W, 1914-1918
The full title of this newsreel reads: Trench Warfare. Unique pictures actually taken under fire in the Argonne. Although we might question whether these pictures were really taken under enemy fire, this film is as close as cinema audiences at the time could come to the action on the front line, presenting them with an intriguing look at trench life in the First World War.
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