Women and the second world war sources questions essay

Beyond Rosie the Riveter: Women's Contributions During World War II by Sean Irwin Overview Although often understated, the social, economic, and political contributions of American women have all had profound effects on the course of this nation.

Women and the second world war sources questions essay

Personal use only; commercial use is strictly prohibited for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice. Over three hundred fifty thousand women volunteered for military service, while twenty times as many stepped into civilian jobs, including positions previously closed to them.

More than seven million women who had not been wage earners before the war joined eleven million women already in the American work force.

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Between andan untold number moved away from their hometowns to take advantage of wartime opportunities, but many more remained in place, organizing home front initiatives to conserve resources, to build morale, to raise funds, and to fill jobs left by men who entered military service.

Social mores were tested by the demands of war, allowing women to benefit from the shifts and make alterations of their own. Yet dominant gender norms provided ways to maintain social order amidst fast-paced change, and when some women challenged these norms, they faced harsh criticism.

Race, class, sexuality, age, religion, education, and region of birth, among other factors, combined to limit opportunities for some women while expanding them for others. However temporary and unprecedented the wartime crisis, American women would find that their individual and collective experiences from to prevented them from stepping back into a prewar social and economic structure.

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By stretching and reshaping gender norms and roles, World War II and the women who lived it laid solid foundations for the various civil rights movements that would sweep the United States and grip the American imagination in the second half of the 20th century.

In each of these arenas, women exercised initiative, autonomy, circumspection, caution, or discretion according to their individual needs and the dictates of patriotic duty. Wage Work and Opportunity Economic opportunities abounded for women willing and able to seize them.

Wage work in war industries offered hourly pay rates much higher than those to which most women had been accustomed, with the best wages paid in munitions plants and the aircraft industry. The WMC also identified one hundred U. The main targets were local married women who already lived in the designated metropolitan areas, including middle-aged and older individuals who had never worked outside their homes or whose experience was limited to domestic work.

Madison Avenue advertising agencies designed and produced a variety of propaganda campaigns for the U. Employment Service offices coordinated efforts to place women in jobs best suited to their skills and family needs.

Mothers with children under fourteen were encouraged not to seek employment outside their homes unless other family members or trusted neighbors could offer reliable childcare.

Several corporations with U. Constance Bowman, a schoolteacher who spent the summer of working in a San Diego B bomber factory, earned 68 cents an hour.

Department of Labor sent field representatives to factories throughout the country to scrutinize working conditions. The WB urged factories to adopt rules about head coverings as well as safety shoes and slacks. Such comfort packages would not merely attract employees but also keep them content and more likely to stay after they had been hired.

Very few grocery and department store owners chose to accommodate women who needed to do their shopping in the late evening or night hours. They endured racial slurs and physical attacks in factories, and disproportionately filled the lowest-paid and least appealing jobs, including janitorial work.

The Fair Employment Practices Committee FEPC —created by Executive Order in to address racial discrimination in industry—lacked the funds to handle the wave of complaints engendered by rapid wartime mobilization. When FEPC cases faced delays, black women searching for work or seeking promotions in their current jobs suffered the most.

But women of color, like all American women, found their greatest challenge to be reconciling home life and work life during the war years.

Beyond riveting and welding, other tasks required even more hands and minds nationwide. The United States needed farm laborers, telephone operators, laundry workers, food servers, and bus drivers.

And while women had filled clerical positions for nearly half a century in the United States, the war accelerated the trend. Women took certain places as men vacated them, with the U.

The expanding bureaucratic structure of war was matched by private sector growth, where American businesses were forced to open their doors and offices to female employees.

With the military draft taking its share of male, middle-class clerks and salesmen, openings for women abounded in the consumer economy. Radio stations, insurance firms, and advertising agencies hired more women than ever before. Images circulated of the rich snob who sat at a booth for a few hours a week but remained oblivious to real sacrifice.

The AWVS affected every aspect of wartime culture, sending its members to assist military personnel, distribute ration books, sell war bonds, and collect salvage, as well as to recruit blood donors, nurses, farm workers, and child care workers, and to knit, sew, and recondition clothes for military families and relief agencies.

Across the country the AWVS made strides in several socially sensitive areas including interracial cooperation. Interracial volunteer activities among women spurred optimism for a more inclusive postwar America while stimulating the growth of similar organizations where women could meet and serve a larger cause.

In assisting and entertaining U. Through gender-defined actions and activities, USO volunteers were expected to assume particular mental and emotional postures when dealing with soldiers and sailors.

How she presented herself would determine the reactions of soldiers and sailors, she was instructed. Since many USO sites provided games, women played table tennis, checkers, and cards, and often allowed their male opponents to win.

Women and the second world war sources questions essay

In packed trains and buses, often with young children in tow, they made their way cross-country to visit or live near their husbands. But female volunteers in military organizations founded during World War II faced tougher scrutiny than nurses; their womanhood and femininity were questioned by many detractors, even though the idea of national service for women was not new.

As early asFirst Lady Eleanor Roosevelt had recommended a required service responsibility although not specifically a military duty for all young American women.The Second World War changed the United States for women, and women in turn transformed their nation.

Over three hundred fifty thousand women volunteered for military service, while twenty times as many stepped into civilian jobs, including positions previously closed to them. Role of Women in World War II Student Institution Date Although regularly downplayed, social, financial, and political commitments of American women have all had significant consequences for the course of this nation (Price, ).

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Women, Gender, and World War II - Oxford Research Encyclopedia of American History

Many American students are aware that women played a role in the Second World War. Unfortunately this knowledge is often limited only to images of "Rosie the Riveter" and the wives and mothers left to manage households on their own.

Role of Women in World War II Student Institution Date Although regularly downplayed, social, financial, and political commitments of American women have all had significant consequences for the course of this nation (Price, ).

Women in World War II During World War II Hitler was skulking around Europe pretending to save Germany, military minds in Washington were stonewalling women's organizations, patriotic pressures, and anyone who had the temerity to suggest that women should be in the military.

Paper 2: The Cold War - initiativeblog.com