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Send email to admin eh. Newsletters To join the newsletters or submit a posting go to click here. Zeiger, Susan Reviewer s: Nickless, Pamela Published by EH.
Women Workers with the American Expeditionary Force, Cornell University Press, The image of an aristocratic beautiful young Englishwoman as a heroic ambulance driver Mayure nurse in World War Mature girl in Uncle Sam is common to most of us. Slightly less common perhaps is the smiling gorgeous young American canteen girl dispensing coffee, doughnuts and patriotic good cheer to American boys at the front.
These Anglo-American images of the role of women in World War I have an element of truth but they have silenced a far more interesting story that Susan Zeiger Associate Professor Mature girl in Uncle Sam History, Regis College tells in this fine book about the first US war in which women were mobilized by the armed forces. At least 16, women were part of the American Expeditionary Force AEF as members of the army, civilian employees of the army, or employees of official Matre agencies working with the army.
In the early twentieth century, the problem of gender and war was very different from our own attempt to grapple with women and military service. The argument, simply put, was more essentialist.
Both of these essentialist arguments would be threatened by the deployment of women in the war zone. Professor Zeiger has done a great job with this interesting and complex story.
She describes mobilization efforts and the women who enlisted and then spends a chapter each on auxiliary workers doughnut girlsclerical workers and telephone operators, and nurses. She concludes with a chapter on the meaning of wartime work.Shullsburg WI Milf Personals
The struggle to use women for necessary labor but to avoid challenging traditional Maturee roles is made clear in all three broad categories of female labor. For example, the clerical workers and telephone operators were workers who possessed skills crucial to the communication necessary to troop and supply movements.
They were subject to military discipline but were not in the military a distinction often lost on the women themselves and soldiers. Early on it was discovered that men who were not trained in civilian life to run switchboards and typewriters could not successfully replace Matyre in these Mature girl in Uncle Sam roles. The information revolution of the late nineteenth century had created a whole new class of Mture required for the functioning of a bureaucracy.
Secretaries and telephone operators had access to vital information hence the need for military discipline — yet, many in the military, including the Secretary of War opposed enlisting women. It was decided gil women would not be in the army and the YWCA stepped in to oversee the private lives of women and arrange for their living Mature girl in Uncle Sam. Women were subjected to military discipline and dress, often putting up with heavy-handed managerial policies because they believed they were in the army.
Signal Corps women in particular were disappointed after the war to discover they did not qualify for veterans benefits and organized to demand recognition. Nurses really were in the army and were officers but were denied military rank.
Nurses, unlike other servicewomen, organized during the war and demanded recognition and autonomy but the army was resistant. The army required that the Red Cross provide each nurse who was a member gir the army!
Further army nurses would not be paid Unlce held as prisoners of Mature girl in Uncle Sam male personnel were and were excluded from retirement benefits. The nurses were successful in overturning the pay for prisoners of war ruling during the war but the exclusion from retirement benefits held.
Concern about proper female behavior was paramount in the minds of the military and the auxiliary organizations that recruited women.
Auxiliary workers in particular were expected to create a domestic environment on the front. When they found themselves doing work that resembled unpaid domestic labor and isolated from the military aspects of the war, they were often frustrated.
The notion of creating domestic space without sexual tension may have been easier than it seems since most women were ten or more years older than the doughboys. Yet, rumors of sexual misbehavior occasionally surfaced and camp love affairs did occur.Ladies Seeking Nsa Bloomingburg Ohio
Interestingly, the most vicious and persistent rumors of sexual misbehavior by women or sexual violence by men concerned nurses, the only women who were members of the armed forces. Zeiger argues convincingly that these persistent rumors were a covert way of im the dependence of the military on skilled women.
The rumors reflect the view that female sexuality was a threat to Mature girl in Uncle Sam at war. The war exposed the inherent contradiction between the increasing employment of middle-class women outside the domestic sphere and the traditional ideology of gender roles.
Grl claimed full citizenship on the basis of their participation in the work of the nation, both at home in the labor force and on the front in the war.
I recommend this very thoughtful book to anyone interested in World War I and to anyone interested in the changing nature of gender roles. The role of the suffrage movement in the war effort and gender role shifts is a very interesting sub-theme, which will also be of general interest. She is currently working on an article on Mature girl in Uncle Sam changing legal status of women in nineteenth-century North Carolina.
Labor and Employment History Geographic Area s: North America Time Period s: