Pre-War To Post-War Experience on the Home-Front

World War II had significantly less catastrophic impact on the American home-front compared to the home-fronts of other combatants. Mobilization during the war made the American economy return to full production. It also led to full employment and economic prosperity after the economic turmoil that followed the Great Depression. The war necessitated the U.S. government to become larger and more expensive to enable it manage the war. More than 75% of Americans took part in wartime migration, which led to the surging of the populations of Sunbelt and metropolitan areas. The war also increased the opportunities for women and African Americans as all Americans joined forces in their quest to attain victory. As such, the U.S. was significantly different, and better, in 1945 after the war had ended than it looked five years earlier prior to the beginning of the war.  As an individual who lived during the World War II, the increased economic activities due to the war would have increased my income significantly. People who took part in the war had new sources of income, which enabled them to purchase various products that I would have sold in my shop at good prices. The end of the war marked the emergence of American consumerism. Therefore, it would have given me a good opportunity to benefit from the increased economic activity (Lind, 2014).

However, there was another side to the home-front experience of the Second World War. As the war led to massive movement of people, migrants were treated with suspicion or in some instances, hostility by the members of the new communities they relocated to. Therefore, prejudice and discrimination continued to be prevalent in the American society. Shortages of some consumer goods made people result to the black market to access the goods. Wartime censorship and other actions undertaken by the American government in some instances eroded the civil liberties of Americans (Winkler, 2000).

The war had great economic impact on the U.S. Production of war goods helped in improving the American economy and overcoming the Axis. It enabled the U.S. to overcome the Great Depression. This is highlighted by the fact that as late as 1940, the unemployment level in the U.S. was 14.6%. However, by 1944, it had reduced to a mere 1.2%. The war also made the American gross national product to more than double during the same period. The government also controlled inflation. Finally, despite the fact that there were wartime shortages and rationing, spending on consumer goods increased significantly after the war. The war marked the onset of American consumerism. It enabled people to have higher living standards (Winkler, 2000).

Mobilization during the Second World War created new opportunities and aspirations of Americans. Prior to the war, the major issue was how to find jobs for the existing workforce. However, during the war, the major issue on the home-front was how to find workers for the jobs than had to be done. As such, it necessitated businesses to turn to other sources of workers who included the elderly, young people, African Americans, married women, and women over 35 years old. The war also made young men and women who joined the army to gain experience in various fields. It also enabled them to broaden their perspectives. As such, the GI Bill of Rights, which was passed after the end of the war helped in improving skilled labor in the U.S (Winkler, 2000).

Americans on the home-front had time to take part in activities they enjoyed. As such, they watched sports events, movies, and listened to music at home or watched live performances. They did not experience the catastrophic home-front impacts such as those experienced by the British and Germans. They were joyous of the victories of the British naval ships on German home-fronts and were saddened by the bombings of British home-fronts by the Germans (Winkler, 2000).

The war helped in changing international relations. It led to the formation of the United Nations, which controls the international relations of various countries. The U.N. has helped in ending conflicts, which has prevented the occurrence of another war that has such a magnitude (Winkler, 2000).

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