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Manhood on the LineWorking-Class Masculinities in the American Heartland$
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Stephen Meyer

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780252040054

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252040054.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM ILLINOIS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Illinois University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ISO for personal use.date: 18 September 2021

The Female “Invasion”

The Female “Invasion”

Women and the Male Workplace, 1940–1945

Chapter:
(p.141) 6 The Female “Invasion”
Source:
Manhood on the Line
Author(s):

Stephen Meyer

Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
DOI:10.5406/illinois/9780252040054.003.0007

This chapter examines how female workers rearranged and reconfigured the social contours of the automotive workplace during the onset of World War II. The outbreak of the war had resulted in a huge increase in the volume of defense production as well as the departure of male workers to European and Asian battlefields, leading to severe labor shortages in American plants and factories. As the war progressed, the auto and (later) aircraft industries brought more women into positions formerly reserved for men. These new female workers challenged the privileged position and dominance of men on the shop floor and tested the premises of the densely male shop culture.

Keywords:   female auto workers, World War II, defense production, labor shortages, automobile industry, aircraft industry, female workers, male shop culture

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