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Women and Work on the Home Front.

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Introduction

Section A: Women and Work on the Home Front According to source A1, women contributed significantly to the war effort. Many men believed that in times of war the women's role was to keep the home life normal, which a few women did do. However, women were needed to maintain the crucial industrial output that proved so significant in winning the war. As in the First World War, the factories turned to women, as their male workforces were a way fighting. In addition, many women worked on the land, and many were mobilised into civil defence. Britain also introduced conscription for women, which was highly unusual but it can prove how much women were needed. According to sources A1 and A2, women responded positively to the outbreak of war, by showing their willingness to help out and do work on the home front. Up until 1942, a large number of women were already contributing to the war effort by volunteering their services. Source A1 tells us about the women's conscription act passed in 1942 after the government calculated two million more people were needed for work in the factories and the forces, source A2 tells us that seven and a quarter million women had been conscripted by 1943, and many other women worked voluntary. This is certainly a positive response, and women were said to be "patriotic and they realised the need or national unity. ...read more.

Middle

Two: it promotes the work the government want the women to undertake. The article puts great emphasis on "tipping the scales" and the idea that the war will be lost if women do not immediately volunteer, there is a great sense of urgency. The source also stresses the need for women to 'volunteer', which suggests that the government originally did not want to conscript women. The article is written to prove its point from various angles. It promotes jobs as glamorous, says that the jobs women are needed for are just as important as the ones men do, fighting as soldiers, and stresses the honour women would gain from working and the equality they would have with men. The article is agreeing that women are capable of doing the work required of them, and emphasises the end of patronising women in employment by the phrase " no longer...little jobs for little women". The source also plays on the women's guilt, saying that the war will be lost if the women do not help. The article also gives some information on certain jobs, like including the pay figures for work on the battlefront and civil defence and the munitions factories. I believe that this source could be quite reliable in certain aspects, but as propaganda, it is likely to be exaggerating the good points of work, and not including the bad points of women working. ...read more.

Conclusion

were. Although these posters are useful forms of primary evidence, they are all propaganda. Propaganda was used during the Second World War to influence public opinion (propaganda is still used today). As this source is purely propaganda, it is unlikely to be balanced and therefore reliable. Further example of government propaganda is source A5. It differs from the propaganda in source A4, as it is an article, and targeted to a specific group of people. The article is government issued. The source is advertising for volunteers to work in factories and the ATS. The source does not have a date, however, we can assume that it is written before 1942 as it is advertising for volunteers to work, and after 1942, it was compulsory for women to do national service so there would be no need for propaganda such as this. The article emphasises the importance of women working, saying that the war would definitely be lost if women do not help. There is no reason to doubt the truthfulness of the article, however, as propaganda the use of exaggeration and the avoidance of any negative views must be taken into consideration. I believe that World War 2 greatly affected people's attitudes towards women and work. Nevertheless, I feel that it was mainly women's attitudes that were changed, rather than men's. After, and gradually during the war, women became more confident in their capabilities, and their refreshed attitudes became a turning point in British history. ...read more.

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