HIS 204 American History since 1865
October 3, 2011
The End of Isolation for Women
The women’s place was always in the home and taking care of her children and husband. These ideas go back as far as time can remember, it is not until women started standing up for their rights and wanting equal opportunities did this idea start to change. Through many historical events women gained such opportunities as the right to vote, the right to seek higher education, the opportunity to serve her country, and most importantly the opportunity to become part of the workforce with equal rights and pay. The first opportunities for women came at the onset of war when they were called upon to volunteer for service. More than 20,000 women served in the armed forces and 5,000 of those were nurses which was a pivotal turning point for women. The war provided a chance for women to demonstrate that they too could make contributions to the labor force. Their participation in the war was not only for the nation but also for their own cause, both in their conduct of war and in the history of the woman’s movement (Clarke, 1918). War time presented other opportunities for women as well, the demand for workers in manufacturing jobs far exceeded the supply of white males in the civilian economy, the number of occupations open to women and minorities had expanded enormously (Anderson, K. pg 35). The patriotism of war work made it much more acceptable for women to break into the men’s work than was normally the case. The wartime employment of women severely threatened to undermine stereotypes that were used to defend their confinement to the home. An example of even more opportunity was World War II where females were called upon to be pilots. The shortage of trained pilots for the war played a big part in this opportunity for women and their role in World War II eighteen classes of women graduated from the Army Air forces...