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What do you understand by the term “Total war”?

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What do you understand by the term "Total war"? Total war is a term that till the 20th century had never been in use or practiced. Total War is the total engagement of a nation's economic, social, cultural, and political capital in the war. Till world war one wars had only occurred on the battlefields. Wars were only head to head collisions of bloodshed and casualties. Wars had till then never involved people at home. The last century of the millennium was to change that. 'Total war was the organization or mobilization of all sectors of society to support the war efforts. As a result of this mobilization of the civilian population, the term 'home front' came to be used to describe the domestic scene.' World war one involved both the war front, but also, for the first time, the home front. All elements of this total war are connected. The First World War was fought using enormous amounts of materials including weaponry, ammunition and transport vehicles, but also millions of men. ...read more.


Four years later, by 1918, this had risen to 333% compared with the beginning of the war. The women's role in the war was very significant but accompanied with much trouble while trying to help. Male trade unions were worried that if women took the jobs of men the men would not be able to get them back when they returned from the war. As a result of this many employers and the government agreed with the trade unions that all jobs should be returned to their previous occupants once the war came to an end. Work in the factories was not intended to alter the social structure, but was solely in terms of the war efforts. This clearly proves that women were in the war effort to help, as they had no chance of keeping their job after the war. At this time newspapers and periodicals were a major source of information about the war effort. To keep spirits high at home, editors sometimes withheld information that might lower the moral of the country. ...read more.


The technology of war created millions of man losses and countries were in serious problems realizing their extreme shortage. Once again, the term total war applies. France involved their colonies from Africa, and England their Australian colony. The European war now became a world war with countries from around the globe became involved. Asia, Africa, America, Australia all entered a European war because of different reasons. Hence the term Total World War. The Period described was not the first time a world society had been exposed to mobilization for war, and it was not the first time governments had extended their power and limited rights of civilians. However, it was the first time engagement of a nation's economic, social, cultural, and political capital in the war was put to the test in such extents. Both Home and War fronts were obliged in order for this war to establish itself. All systems altered in order to serve for war interests: technology, transport, research, production, social structure, colonial influence, taxation, and government rule. Hence the term Total War. ...read more.

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