Discipline and Loss of Morale

Matthews James

in Reluctant Warriors

Published in print June 2012 | ISBN: 9780199655748
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199949953 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Historical Monographs

Discipline and Loss of Morale

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This chapter examines both sides’ ability to maintain discipline within their respective armies and also how swiftly morale deteriorated during a protracted conflict, particularly when basic living conditions became intolerable. It examines the different approaches to discipline in the Nationalist and Republican armies, as well as the ways in which discipline was imposed and how both armies sought to maintain a compliant fighting force. It also examines the common breaches of the disciplinary code and attempts to modify soldiers’ behaviour, as well as the causes for low morale. The sustained mobilization campaigns severely tested both sides. Material shortages and defeatism were particularly marked for the Republic as the Nationalist Army advanced steadily into government territory.

Keywords: discipline; loss of morale; basic living conditions; challenges to mobilization; defeatism; shortages

Chapter.  18462 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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