Keep Calm and Carry On and other Second World War Posters (@ww2poster)

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So you’ve heard all about the poster ‘discovered’ by Barter Books in 2001? These pages give you the full history of the Keep Calm and Carry On series, as covered in Dr Bex Lewis’s history PhD thesis, and previously in her undergraduate thesis in 1997 , first addressed in her A-Level project (read as PDF), as well as many other posters, and tracking some of the renaissance of the poster alongside the economic recession.

People, whether they lived through the war years or not, can remember many of the British poster slogans from the Second World War, including:

KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON
CARELESS TALK COSTS LIVES
COUGHS AND SNEEZES SPREAD DISEASES
DIG FOR VICTORY
KEEP MUM, SHE’S NOT SO DUMB
LEND A HAND ON THE LAND
LOOK OUT IN THE BLACKOUT

What is it that makes these poster images and slogans so enduring, not only for those for who would have seen them during the war years, but also the youngest generations?

Read about the poster artists, find out more about vintage posters, including where to purchase, associated books to read, see poster images, and read about copyright. How did Bex’s interest in this all start, what were the plans for the PhD, where did she go to research this topic, what digitisation resources were used?

If you’re looking for information specific to Keep Calm and Carry On, read about ‘The Three Posters‘, and the numbers in which it was produced.

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