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The unforgettable oral history of Soviet women's experiences in the Second World War from the winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature.

Bringing together dozens of voices in her distinctive style, The Unwomanly Face of War is Svetlana Alexievich's collection of stories from Soviet women who lived through the Second World War: on the front lines, on the home front and in occupied territories. As Alexievich gives voice to women who are absent from official narratives - captains, sergeants, nurses, snipers and pilots - she shows us a new version of the war we're so familiar with, creating an extraordinary alternative history from their private stories.

Published in 1985 in Russia and now available in English for the first time, The Unwomanly Face of War was Alexievich's first book and a huge bestseller in the Soviet Union, establishing her as a brilliantly revolutionary writer.

Formats & editions

  • Hardback


    August 28, 2017

    Penguin Classics

    384 pages

    RRP $29.99

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Dymocks
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook


    July 25, 2017

    Penguin eBooks

    Online retailers

    • iBooks
    • Amazon Kindle
    • Booktopia
    • eBooks
    • Google Play
    • Kobo

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

Also by Svetlana Alexievich

Boys In Zinc
Secondhand Time: The Last of the Soviets
Chernobyl Prayer


Six Minutes in May
The Story of the Jews
Man's Search For Meaning
The Wife Drought
The Choice
Life After Life
Good Night Stories For Rebel Girls
Darkest Hour: How Churchill Brought Us Back From the Brink
The Square and the Tower: Networks, Hierarchies and the Struggle for Global Power
The Better Angels Of Our Nature
The House by the Lake
The Crime and the Silence
The War in the West: A New History
The German War
Into The Silence