Women at War

Victoria Stewart

in The Second World War in Contemporary British Fiction

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print July 2011 | ISBN: 9780748640997
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748651832 | DOI:
Women at War

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This chapter discusses how illicit relationships might have been conducted during the war and what the supposed freedoms of wartime offered women, showing that the actions of women in wartime were still restricted by cultural expectations and biological factors. It studies the occurrence of unwanted and illegitimate children and illegal abortion, which are presented in novels such as War Crimes for the Home and Boy Blue, and signify the involvement of motherhood and potential motherhood with secrecy. The chapter also outlines whether the war can be seen to have had a lasting effect on the social roles and opportunities of women.

Keywords: illicit relationships; freedoms; women; cultural expectations; biological factors; illegitimate children; illegal abortion; motherhood

Chapter.  16883 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (20th Century onwards)

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