This book looks at a topic familiar to students of the Second World War, the role of Women in the war effort, but focuses on the First World War. The key difference between the role of women in the First and Second World Wars is that in the Second World War there was never any doubt that women would serve in large numbers, overseas and at home, and in and out of uniform. This was not the case during the First World War - indeed the uniformed Women's Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC) and Women's Royal Naval Service (WRNS) didn't appear until 1917, and many earlier voluntary groups were spurned by the military authorities.
The worst case was perhaps that of the Scottish Women's Hospitals, which by 1918 was providing fourteen hospital units and working with every Allied army apart from the British! Even at home there was resistance to the use of women to fill jobs left empty by the troops, or new jobs created by the war, especially in the munitions industry, and it was only really in 1916 that large numbers of women began to work in industry.
This is a valuable introduction to an important topic, looking at the struggles so many women faced to overcome the deeply ingrained prejudice of 1914 as they attempted to make a contribution to the war effort, and the eventual successes that led directly to women's suffrage.
Munitionettes and Woman War Workers
On the Land
Demob and Legacies
Author: Neil R. Storey & Molly Housego