World War II and the Homefront: Government-Subsidized Childcare

After the lecture on second wave feminism today, many of you asked questions about the U.S. government providing childcare to women who went to work in the munitions factories and other industries as many of the working-age men went to war overseas.

Dr. Sonya Michel (Univ. of Maryland) offers a wonderful “History of Child Care in the U.S.” on the Social Welfare History Project website – check it out! Dr. Michel begins her history in the early 19th century and ends her analysis with the Reagan years and early 1990s, but she devotes a section to World War II (scroll down).

Also, for those of you interested in women’s labor during the War AND looking for something to watch in your free time, check out these three shows, all available on Netflix

BOMB GIRLS (Women working in a Canadian munitions factory encounter personal and political drama and intrigue)

bomb girls

THE BLETCHLEY CIRCLE (post-war murder mystery/women code-breakers – only two short seasons, but a wonderful show!)

blethcly circle

LAND GIRLS (BBC series, Women of the British Women’s Land Army, who took over much of the farming labor during the war)

land girls

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