Summary: The Influence Of Women During World War II

Superior Essays
She was taught to be a housewife. She was taught to do right by her husband and to do right by her God, questioning neither. She was taught to find her place, stay in it, and teach her daughters to do the same. She was taught to be a part of her spouse rather than her own person (Levy 28). A woman in the 1940s was truly a shell of a person, a trained dog led by society and males, until the war effort needed to expand. Employers had resisted with all their might until the positions held by males were exhausted to the point where females were absolutely necessary (Milkman 337). There were too many jobs and there was too little time to have solely males working for the war effort. Within a small frame of time, over six million women flocked to …show more content…
Between working in factories, making machines that would be sent overseas, and writing to spouses who were internationally stationed, women expanded their sphere of influence. A prime example was a woman named Polly Crow who wrote to her husband William Crow throughout his entire station in Europe. She wrote him concerning her worries, but primarily focused on what she was doing to create a life for them once he returned (Littoff 146). Crow was intrigued by the idea of war jobs and decided to take one up. She wrote to her husband detailing a plan that involved taking a “swing shift” at a defense plant, as this would allow her to stay with her child (Littoff 146). In later letters, Mrs.Crow describes her financial plan and the projected amount that she would have once her husband returned home. She was deeply concerned about her spouse being able to come back into the United States and take a break. If she didn’t work, her husband would have to transfer from one hard job to another (Littoff 147). It’s hard to imagine what it was like for Mr.Crow being in a foreign country and fighting a war, all while away from his loved ones. Even harder is to imagine what it’s like to worry about life at the war. By writing to her husband, Mrs.Crow mollified many of Mr.Crow’s worries and provided him with the relief of knowing he had a home to come back to. Their story is one of many where women …show more content…
Similarly, there were few women that were not forever influenced by their contribution to the war. They discovered things about themselves and about their society that would change them forever. A group that was possibly the most impacted was the Rosies, a group of thousands of women were took on jobs that were known previously as men’s work (Levy 34). These women coined the term “Rosie the Riveter” after the infamous image was released in 1943 within a newspaper. Drawn by Norman Rockwell, this image depicted a female riveter, a factory job, with her sleeves rolled and muscles shown with the words “We Can Do It”. It represented the glamour that was starting to form around the idea of working. Women working in factories were not seen as low class, but rather as patriots during their duty (Levy, 28). While working, Rosies noticed changes happening within themselves. They felt stronger, both physically and mentally, and began to gain confidence as a result of their evident hard work (Zauzmer). Even when men would bully them in an attempt to break their spirits, women ignored them completely (Barr 24). Similarly, women also had to endure specific kinds of insults that men never would. Members of the Rochambelles reported being “treated like whores”, as men would pretend that the women were prostitutes if they were to walk across the yard at night (Hampton 43). The women were singled out for their gender

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