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Trade advertisement for the “This is America” film series that includes “Women at Arms” (1943)

Object | Accession Number: 2018.590.100

Double-page trade advertisement for the film series, “This Is America,” including the short film “Women at Arms,” removed from a British trade publication. “This Is America” was a series of nonfiction, patriotic short films released by RKO. The second of the series, “Women at Arms” contrasted the wartime roles of women in the United States and Germany. In the 1930s and 1940s, the Nazi government idealized German women who focused on the domestic sphere and raising children, and were often compelled to leave the workplace. The government offered public support for families, and awarded the Cross of Honor of the German Mother to women who bore four or more children. Despite the plethora of propaganda on the role of the ideal German woman, wartime needs led to a different reality. All school-age girls attended summer labor camps, and single women were obliged to participate in the Duty Year of compulsory-service. By 1945, the German army included almost 500,000 auxiliaries. In contrast to the ideal German woman, “Women at Arms” shows American women taking over a large number of manufacturing jobs vacated by men who joined, or were drafted into, the armed forces. After the United States entered World War II in December 1941, over 2 million women joined the workforce. The need in manufacturing was so great that a federal agency, the War Manpower Commission, began actively recruiting women. As men returned from the war, however, many women were forced out of their jobs despite their desire to continue working. This object is one of more than 1,200 objects in the Cinema Judaica Collection of materials related to films about World War II and the Holocaust as well as Jewish, Israeli, and biblical themes.

Cinematic Release:  1942 November
publication:  1943 February 11
creation: United States
distribution: United States
distribution: Great Britain
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Ken Sutak and Sherri Venokur
Record last modified: 2022-05-26 08:58:37
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