The efficiency of sources
The efficiency of sources may differ as some are more restricted, thus more inadequate than others. The utility can be scrutinized by exercising various analyses’s and conditions. You have to consider the writer, status, motive and accuracy. On this basis I have started with a theory that the sources could be subjective as they were all written by British men. You can also note that all three sources give a different interpretation of what occurred. For example in source a, commander Thomas Kerr deems the lingering soldiers as useless and condemns their faith in the navy.
Nevertheless, according to source C, there was a valiant and courageous sergeant who heroically took on eight Heinkels (planes). First of all, source A, in my opinion is very useful as it is an account from a high ranked commander of war. It must have some authenticity in it as Thomas Kerr is being extraordinarily negative of the army whereas he is being positive of the navy. This source, is a primary source. Anybody with his status would have had an incredibly superior awareness of the army’s plans and would have had a first hand outlook on what was going on.
Furthermore the source is providing us with a more realistic notion of what ensued as it is not saying that the British were unflustered by the state of affairs. He is not only acknowledging that the British were suffering, but also revealing it to everyone, which would have been a very risky strategy unless it was in a diary, the is no value in being deceitful in a diary. So if it was written in a diary I believe that it would have been the truth and nothing but the truth. This source also appears to be useful since it is frank and seems realistic.
Not only that, but is also an eyewitness account, which also makes it more valuable for the reason that he is describing what he saw. However, there are aspects of the source that cast doubt a in my mind as the source contains rigorous precincts which prompt its genuineness to decrease such as there was no date, his motives remain indistinguishable and the time and place of publication is indefinite. He could also be doing it by means of propaganda to give the impression that he and his force are patriots.
We also remain oblivious to the form that it was written in, whether it was in a diary, newspaper or anything else. Secondly, source B, at first glance, incorporates precision and truthfulness. From acquaintance and fact we discern that a lot of British men died whilst trying to get on board the ships. This source is a primary one as it was written by a soldier who was present at the time, so in all likelihood, he would tell the truth. He also gives us a very first-rate outlook of the battle.
His account has a much unbiased initiative of what happens; he portrays both British and Germans in positive light, hence enhancing its usefulness and believability. He informs us that, although the Germans took them to the boundaries it only spurred them on to greater heights and they certainly did not relinquish. Meanwhile, he also enlightens us concerning how the Germans were massacring the British armed forces. Albeit it is very constructive, in some places the source seems fabricated.
The writer gives the intuition that the amount of planes and weaponry that the Germans beheld were minimal. He says ‘a German fighter’ which implies that there was only one German combatant perceptible. The are also some limitations in this source; Bill Elmsie was a seaman manning one of the boats, so it is implausible for him to have much understanding or credibility. He also says that the soldiers were in columns and were very organised which is evidently inadequate. From knowledge I am aware that there was no sense of order and that it was every man for himself.
It is quite probable that this account was published as it contained no deprecation or criticism of the British soldiers. There is also nothing in the source to censor, there is no date, no motive and no consign of publication. Finally, I will reflect on source C, considering the fact that source C was written by a Cornish able seaman from Britain it is perceived to have a few precincts as this seamen would encompass virtually nothing to do with the battle. As with source A and B, there is no date, no motive, no place or time of publishing.
This source is also dreadfully unrealistic and in my opinion, it is nothing more than an evident manifestation of propaganda. The information that it provides us with is negligible, it does not provide us with anything about the war and quite frankly, it seems like a child’s fantasy. It says that one RASC sergeant takes on eight German fighter plains and drives them away by shooting at them! This source is not in any way reliable because, just by reading it, any rational person would acknowledge that it is a blatant lie, undoubtedly done to boost morale.
This source is likely to have been published as it unmistakably compliments the British army and portrays the Germans as unworthy cowards; it is based on opinion rather that fact. After examining all three sources, I believe that they all contain some degree of false pretence, and all three either don’t contain much information, or the information that they integrate is not of much use when trying to gain a wider perception of what happened during the battle of Dunkirk.
None of the sources give us a date, when or where it was published nor do they enlighten us on the foundations of this epic battle which leads me to believe that they are incompetent. They also only comprise of British viewpoints, hence it would have been very accommodating to have French or German adaptations to collaborate what these sources are saying. Irrespective of whether the sources were authentic or not, they were all based on personal opinion rather than fact.
In my opinion source A is without doubt the most useful as it told us about more of the battle than any of the others and due to the fact that it was written by a commander, who gave us a more realistic account and must have had more knowledge of the battle than the other authors. In contrast, I believe that source C was evidently the least useful, as it seems particularly fictional, it is severely limited and gives a much fantasised version of what really took place.
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