Inhaltsangabe oder Einleitung
Never before had women been so emancipated from the expectations of home, family and society, than during the years of World War II (1939-45) when the role of women in main-stream Australian society changed dramatically.
Before World War II middle-class women were mainly considered to be mothers and wives limited to their homes, who worked only until they got married.
Then during World War II all women were encouraged by the government to work in previously male dominated fields as in factories or engaged as members of the defense services or Land Army. Women were needed as nurses at the front, to work military machines as well as keep homes ready for men to come home. By entering the ‘world of paid work’ women were able “to enter new domains and to exercise new economic, social and sexual power”.
With husbands and possible suitors gone to serve a number of Australian women found therein “a new sense of independence, self-reliance and autonomy”.
It was a challenging time for married women and mothers with husbands gone, but also a very exciting one especially for young girls and unmarried women with thousands of American servicemen coming through Australia bringing a sense of Hollywood and sexual adventure with them.
Writing this essay and gathering literature about Australian women during World War II, I soon noticed that all those authors only wrote about the immigrant Australian women, the ‘new Australian woman’ as I called her in my essay topic. Indigenous women, the native Australian women, were mostly left out. For that reason I included a paragraph at the end of the essay comparing both women’s experiences.
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- Daria Poklad (Autor:in), 2011, Being a New Australian Woman during World War II, München, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/334765