chapter  7
16 Pages

ASSESSING THE CONSEQUENCES OF THE WAR FOR WOMEN

One area of intense debate among historians of women has been the war’s effect on gender roles. After all, the war brought about tangible evidence of a changed world where women could wear khaki uniforms, drive trains, trams and ambulances, and take on industrial tasks previously defined as beyond their capabilities. Furthermore, many women found themselves enfranchised after the war. Yet the end of war and demobilisation displaced most waged women workers from their wartime occupations – particularly in fields that had traditionally been the province of men. What then can be determined about their overall social standing? Can we find significant improvements for women as a whole in the postwar world?