The Second Line of Defense: American Women and World War I

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Date: Fall 2020
From: Teaching History: A Journal of Methods(Vol. 45, Issue 2)
Publisher: Emporia State University
Document Type: Book review
Length: 736 words
Lexile Measure: 1300L

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Lynn Dumenil. The Second Line of Defense: American Women and World War I. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 2017. Pp. 360. $39.95 cloth, $38.99 e-Book.

When considering American women's role during a large twentieth century war, many do not think of the First World War. Outside of the Red Cross or the YWCA, the story many of us learned about the Great War does not include women. We do not have that powerful image of Rosie the Riveter of World War II to connect us to the strong woman of World War I. But Lynn Dumenil closes that gap of knowledge in her outstanding book, The Second Line of Defense: American Women and World War I.

Dumenil is careful not to use "American Women in World War I," (emphasis mine) in the subtitle because she covers so much more than American women in the war. For example, she effectively weaves the women's suffrage movement into the larger context of the story. Women's involvement in the war effort was not only beneficial to a country at war, but also impeccably important to...

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A647352881