The Roles of Women During World War Two

The Roles of Women During World War Two - Roles and...

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Roles and Expectations of Women During World War II Women Roles in Germany, Japan, Russia, Great Britain, and the United States 1
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“Good Work Sister, We Never Figured You Could Do A Man-Sized Job!” -U.S Department of Defense Throughout history women have taken on pivotal roles and responsibilities in times of war. Since the beginning of recorded history we can see evidence of women stepping out of their lives as mothers and wives to work and keep the soldiers well supplied and keep the country moving. Some women would volunteer as nurses, military secretaries, or even disguise themselves as men to join in the fighting. However, when war was over and the men came home women were expected to return to their traditional roles in the home. This would all change with the breakout of World War Two in 1936; again women would be called upon by their respective countries to fill the shoes of the men fighting the war. This time however, women would, for the first time, protest their expected return to tradition, and in effect change the role of women during wartime forever. While all countries involved in WWII utilized their women for the war effort, not all of them did in the same ways. The Axis powers of Germany and Japan were both going through political and social changes, their visions of the future both included the harmonizing and bringing together of their respective races, German Aryans and united Orientals in the Co-East Asia Prosperity Sphere. These reasons for war being ideology based resulted in different expectations of women on the home front. While ideology was the push for war by the Axis, necessity was the push for war by the Allies. In the United States, England, and later 3
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The first changes to the role of women during war came in Germany as the Nazi party seized control of power. The most basic ideology of Hitler and the Nazi party was that of a perfect Aryan race, one free from physical and character flaws such as brown hair and so called “mental illnesses.” German women were told that to acquire this master race they had to breed with German men and raise good German children. In 1933 Hitler enacted the Law for the Encouragement of Marriage; this law stated that, “that all newly married couples would get a government loan of 1000 marks which was about 9 months average income. 800,000 newlyweds took up this offer. This loan was not to be simply paid back. The birth of one child meant that 25% of the loan did not have to be paid back. Two children meant that 50% of the loan need not be paid back. Four children meant that the entire loan was cleared” (Historylearningsite.co.uk/WomenNaziGermany). To be good German women you were to reproduce for the greater good of Germany. However, in 1937 with the war process beginning in Germany and the demand for labor forces increasing, Hitler then passed a law requiring women to complete a “Duty year” enabling women to patriotically work in German factories to produce war materials. Hitler did a good job of educating women from a young age that their true purpose and
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The Roles of Women During World War Two - Roles and...

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