Women after World War 2

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Field Trip Back in Time

The World War II era encouraged women to recognize their potential by entering the workforce, thereby helping to create a relatively stable postwar domestic economy. For this Assignment, you will consider the impact of the years immediately following the end of WWII by taking a field trip back in time to the immediate postwar era. Time travel is a common theme in literature, film, and television, and characters often find themselves in unfamiliar situations.

For this Assignment, imagine that you, as a 21st Century citizen, have been sent back in time to the years immediately following the end of WWII (i.e., the late 1940s to early 1950s). You will write a narrative of your adventures. Feel free to be creative! You can write this Assignment in essay format, a short story, a “Dear Diary” journal entry, or a play. If you opt for a creative writing approach, you will incorporate connections to the Unit 5 Reading material via citations and reference entries just as you would if you were to select the essay approach for this Assignment.

Assignment Requirements

Part I: First, put yourself into the time period immediately following the end of World War II (i.e., 1946 to the early 1950s). Select the role you will assume as a woman in the years following the end of World War II. Will you be a stay-at-home mother? A labor union activist? Or, will you be in the workforce as a telephone operator, a civil servant, etc.? Once you have selected your role for this Assignment, address how you would respond to that selected role. Consider society’s expectations of women in the years following the end of WWII. Would you be willing to accept society’s expectations of you in the immediate post-WWII era?

Select an event or individual from the immediate postwar era, such as the passage of a piece of legislation, women’s involvement in labor unions, or the media portrayal of women in print, film, and/or television, etc. Describe this event or individual, and provide specific details and connections to the Unit 5 Reading. What are your reactions to this event or individual? What do you observe in terms of how those in your (post-WWII) community react to the immediate postwar era? Stay in character for Part I as if you were attempting to blend in with individuals living in the immediate post-WWII era.

Part II: Compare the experiences of women in the immediate post-WWII era to your own experiences in the 21st Century. What has/has not changed? How would you characterize women’s experiences in years immediately following the end of WWII?


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