The Life and Times of Rosie the Riveter

analytical Essay
1656 words
1656 words

The film titled, “The Life and Times of Rosie the Riveter”, looks at the roles of women during and after World War II within the U.S. The film interviews five women who had experienced the World War II effects in the U.S, two who were Caucasian and three who were African American. These five women, who were among the millions of women recruited into skilled male-oriented jobs during World War II, shared insight into how women were treated, viewed and mainly controlled. Along with the interviews are clips from U.S. government propaganda films, news reports from the media, March of Time films, and newspaper stories, all depicting how women are to take "the men’s" places to keep up with industrial production, while reassured that their duties were fulfilling the patriotic and feminine role. After the war the government and media had changed their message as women were to resume the role of the housewife, maid and mother to stay out of the way of returning soldiers. Thus the patriotic and feminine role was nothing but a mystified tactic the government used to maintain the American economic structure during the world war period. It is the contention of this paper to explore how several groups of women were treated as mindless individuals that could be controlled and disposed of through the government arranging social institutions, media manipulation and propaganda, and assumptions behind women’s tendencies which forced “Rosie the Riveter” to become a male dominated concept. Since the war began women were led to believe that they were the ones who had to be the patriotic sacrifice until the men came home from war. The film reveals how the government used the media to alternately urge women to give up such elements of their feminin... ... middle of paper ... ...owards more love stories. Essentially more forms of propaganda ensued to let women know what they should be doing. More domestic jobs became available such as being a maid, restaurant work, dishwashing and cleaning. However women who worked war jobs wanted their own maids now so they could pursue their own dreams. They felt inspired and accomplished. Lola Wiexl mentioned that although skills within the workforce were easily learned, within the household traditions still persisted. Lola herself said she'd go home cook, clean and do the laundry while her brother laid on the couch. She didn't question it before but she was angry about it for years after her war time experience. Thus patriarchal hegemonies still existed after the war and were perpetuated by the government and media as much as possible to solicit women who participated in activities outside of the home.

In this essay, the author

  • Analyzes how the film "the life and times of rosie the riveter" looks at the roles of women during and after world war ii within the u.s.
  • Analyzes how the government used the media to alternately urge women to give up elements of their femininity like clothes, make up, and men, to enter the labour force.
  • Analyzes how the media sustained and enhanced traditional roles and their effective propaganda shaped women's perceptions of wartime experiences to ensure that they would not permanently alter and affect the political hegemony of the government.
  • Analyzes how brown explains marx's interpretation of economic rationality and the placement of the state in forthright and direct service to the economy.
  • Analyzes how kimberle crenshaw describes the concept of intersectionality where race and gender interact in various ways to shape multiple dimensions experiences for different groups of individuals.
  • Analyzes crenshaw's analysis of representational intersectionality where the subordination and marginalization of women of color stems from cultural constructions.
  • Explains that racism is linked to patriarchy where caucasian men have the most authority. the war challenged traditional roles by glorifying men against women and creating hardship and false ideas.
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