In Tom Brokaw’s book, The Greatest Generation, the author portrays ordinary people of a certain generation as having qualities of greatness and heroism. He tells stories of average people that lived inspiring lives through many hardships, and declares today’s society as the beneficiary of their challenging work and commitment. Brokaw’s generous and proficient use of imagery helps to persuade the reader to believe that the people of “the greatest generation” are, indeed, heroic. He defines the strength and resilience of “the greatest generation” by what they were able to confront and overcome.
This investigation will attempt to answer the question: “To what extent did the two major woman’s contributions in World War II, the WAACS and nurses, undergird the women fighting for equal rights achieve their goals of economic and social independence in the job force, during the years following WWII?” This research question will allow for exploration on women involvement in the war and how involvement affected woman’s independence in the United States. This investigation will analyze women rights and war involvement from 1939 to 1964 when title VII was passed.
Even though Rosie the Riveter is an image frequently synonymous with the contemporary women’s movement, she was not designed to promote social change or improve the role of women in the workplace during World War II. In reality, she was promoted as the ideal female worker and was patriotic, confident, capable, and beautiful in a large propaganda campaign by the United States government. Since the war caused many men to answer the call to serve in the military, both at home and abroad, the United States was faced with the urgent challenge of recruiting women into the workforce. Rosie the Riveter was their solution to this problem.
In the decades after the “Good War,” many attempts have been made to extol this generation in the media. Myth and the Greatest Generation: A Social History of Americans in World War II by Kenneth D. Rose, attempts to shine light on how life actually was for the generation that survived World War II, and came to be known as the greatest generation, rather than how that generation appears to us today.
“Although she had worked in the National Consumers League before she was married; which promoted the rights of women; “after World War I, Eleanor Roosevelt realized the power and influence she obtained as First Lady of the United States and desired to help those who were helpless. She worked with the International Congress of Working Women and the Women’s International League of Peace and Freedom; which promoted the end to poverty and war. The friendships made through these societies not only shaped her understanding of the importance and equality of all people, but dramatically changed her life forever.” She was fully committed to American politics and human rights and worked with women rights groups around the nation for women to become involved and to be part of the New Deal. “Eleanor Roosevelt encouraged women to be part of the union, limited the hours and employer forced a woman to work, and fought for the rights for women to vote.” She continuously encouraged women to stand up for their rights and stated of their capability to do the work of that men could accomplish; like joining the military. Even after the end of the White House Eleanor continued to promote women’s equality and believed that women “had special qualities that made the peacemakers and mothers, but also believed these qualities made them fine
Throughout the early twentieth century, women of all ages worked together to fight for equality amongst men and women. From the time of flappers, to the ratification of the nineteenth amendment, to new opportunities during World War II, women have shown strength, bravery, and determination to receive equality for all. Women saw their greatest achievements and advancements economically, followed by the socially and politically. In politics, it was predicted that women would begin to gain opportunities and high paying jobs.
Solomon devoted some consideration to political issues. Women’s role was continually questioned during the American Revolution, when women expressed competency in many roles. While some females joined the war as undercover spies or soldiers, other women established activist groups to protest, campaign and raise funds. Solomon considers this war to be the opportunity for women to demonstrate their abilities in “public and private spheres” that could have implications in the latter movements.
The Greatest Generation was the generation during World War II and the Great Depression. What made them great was their perseverance, patriotism, and sacrifice throughout the WWII era. The citizens that make up the Greatest Generation served their country in any way possible until they could no longer serve. Tom Brokaw describes the backgrounds of theses patriotic Americans, as well as their experiences during and after the war.
It gave them a taste of what was out in the world and got them to think of themselves as workers instead of just homebodies. At first they were hesitant because it was a new domain, but once they grew accustomed to this new role they weren’t about to evacuate and instead embraced their new power with Rosie the Riveter, the new face of activism. Rosie stood for everything these women fought for and was a symbol of hope and persistence. Her famous words echoed through the streets of the United States, “We Can Do It!” Some of the more daring women wanted to help even more, so they enlisted to go fight alongside the men of their country. These brave women were now soldiers and proved that they could enter dangerous situations and do the job right. For the women of this time there was no going back to the docile housewife of the past. From this point on they were looking for a future outside of the house. Then, in 1945 the war drew to a close and men who had been away began to file home. They were anticipating returning to their old jobs that women had occupied when they were away, however women were resisting to leave.
The “Baby Boom” era occurred between the years of the late 1950s thru the 19970s and shaped America and its culture into the type of country it is today. It helps to understand these times to prevent history from repeating itself while better understanding how people were feeling during that time. Also, to better understand what was happening during that time by reading the literature that was written during that time period. Through Tim O’Brien’s “How to Tell a True War Story” to Ursula K. Le Guin’s “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas”, they reflect the cultural, economic, political, and intellectual upheavals the United States was experiencing. These stories affect your way of thinking about these times, especially the war.
Many people have never considered what women were doing in WWII when their husbands left to fight. Their lives weren’t easy or normal during the war. Women had to work just as hard as men, sometimes even more so. In this essay, I will discuss the position of American women before World War II, during the war, and at the end of the war.
World War II was the catalyst that changed the opportunities available to women and eventually the way they were regarded as a viable workforce. Suddenly women throughout the United States were pushing themselves to their limits to support the war effort. Women were fulfilling jobs and responsibilities that many previously believed to be impossible for their gender. Opportunities were opened in steel plants, ammunition factories, and even the United States military. As the war progressed the number of male workers declined dramatically. Society had no choice but to turn to the mothers, sisters, and daughters of our nation for help. The results for each woman varied
“The Greatest Generation” is a term used to describe the generation who were the children of the Great Depression and who became the adults of the Second World War (Brokaw). There may be strong reasons why other generations may be considered great. The generation born during the war undertook the task of putting a man on the moon. This is perhaps the most important of all human endeavors. They are certainly worthy of being considered great but not the greatest. In fifteen years America and indeed the world endured the crushing poverty of the Great Depression and the costliest war in all of human history. The enormous struggles and accomplishments of this generation is what makes it the greatest.
During the war in the 1940s, an aggressive media campaign urged more than six million women into the workforce. It is astonishing seeing each year; there were better accomplishments that women were making. Many learned new techniques such as working in steel plants, shipyards, and lumber mills. Sports also became a new and admired era in this time. The famous “Rosie the Riveter”, “We Can Do It!” was a part of the governor campaign that brought women into the workplace during the war. Following the end of WWII, most of these jobs went back to the men, and women were encouraged to either return back home or find a “female” job. This reveals that women were used. They were only needed when most of the men were in the war. In
Socially, the War left many groups of people questioning their role in society. When the men went off to fight the war, the women were left to run the businesses and assume the positions their husbands left behind. Many women, such as Deborah Sampson and Molly Pitcher picked up their rifles fought alongside the men in the war (Document A). After the war, the women were left questioning their subordinate in society. Women were finding their worth, and slowly started to demand more rights. In her valedictory address from the Young Ladies’ Academy of Philadelphia, Molly Wallace discussed the educational opportunities women should be given stating ‘But to what do they amount? Do they not plainly inform us, because we are females, we ought