Rosie the Riveter

1519 WordsOct 13, 20057 Pages
Rosie the Riveter was a fictional character that was created to encourage women to join the work force during World War II. Men were sent off to war and they left production jobs, factory jobs, and many other positions that needed to be filled. Unprecedented numbers of women entered the world of work, marking the beginning of a major movement of women in industry. The United States on the Eve of World War II: In December 1941, the United States' economy was still recovering from the hard-hitting depression. The Great Depression reinforced the system of women as the backbone of the family, who was to stay home and take care of the household duties and raise the children. These duties often had to be carried out through unsophisticated…show more content…
The overall goal of wartime propaganda was not only to recruit as many women as possible into war industry positions previously held by men, but also an attempt to distinguish the prevailing negative attitude of women workers. Employment Patterns/ Statistics: Prior to the war, women generally held jobs that were either low paying, or held little appeal for male workers. One the men went off to war, the shortage of labor occurred in much higher paying jobs than most women were accustomed to. During the course of the war, "fifty percent of all women who had been in trade and personal service and sixty-six percent of those who had been employed in eating and drinking establishments shifted to war manufacture" as their main source of income. (7) Women saw the situation as a wonderful opportunity for them to excel financially. Women gained more independence, which gave them increasingly more freedom. The role of married women changed drastically. The largest group of women to enter into the work force during the Second World War was married women. In 1944, at the height of war production, almost one in three defense workers was a former full-time homemaker. Their addition meant that married women outnumbered single women workers for the first time in United States history. This statistic proves that the great efforts of wartime propaganda were quite successful. The vacant jobs were being filled as needed, especially once married women joined the force. Approximately
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