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War Songs

A strange category of song because it covers songs about war, songs against war (anti-war which is a particular type of Protest Song), songs of the war and songs particularly about women and war.

Songs of the war is perhaps the easiest category if an example is given. Songs of the American Civil War such as When Johnny Comes Marching Home Again or Marching Through Georgia are identifiably products of the 1860s and as well as defining an era, are still played and sung today.

Anti-war songs are mainly known from 1960s anti-vietnam protest songs - 1,2,3 what are we fighting for? Blowing in the wind, Where have all the Flowers gone etc - most of which have become standard or classic Folk Songs.

 Songs about War are the most difficult category but there are some: The Battle of the Boyne, After the Battle of Aughrim, Killiekrankie, The Minstrel Boy, Bonnie Dundee, The Battle of Otterburn.

Women and war presents a rich seam of songs and also provides some of the most poignant. Songs such as Dancing at Whitsun is a chilling reminder of the massacre of the menfolk of each village.  Songs about parting are many but other types include a particular recurring theme - women going to war frequently disguised as men.