Author: Kimberly Willig

With Women Entering War Work, Nannies and Maids Become Scarce

“Good help is hard to find” has been a complaint of the upper classes for decades. But rarely has it been more fitting than today, as the number of women performing housekeeping jobs, such as nannies and babysitters, continues to dwindle due to the war effort. Women, whose jobs were once solely to take care of other families’ children and households, are now making a splash in the workforce as they keep factories running smoothly while the men are away. The number of women in domestic jobs has decreased dramatically since Pearl Harbor. In San Francisco, which had a...

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To Europe or to Africa?

Having been at war for almost a year, President Roosevelt, together with British leaders, faces a difficult decision: open a second battle front in Europe or send U.S. troops to Axis-occupied Africa? “The coasts of Nazi-occupied Europe are bristling with defenses,” said veteran American diplomat James Gerard. “We have seen half the landing force at Dieppe wiped out in a few hours,” Gerard noted, referring to the disastrous Allied raid on the German-occupied port in Northern France. “But no such problem of invasion exists on the long coast of Africa.” President Roosevelt and Britain’s Prime Minister Winston Churchill have...

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How soldiers are finding education

With no end to the war in sight, it is easy to overlook aspects of life that do not seem to directly affect the war effort. Men as young as 18 are joining the troops overseas, putting off any plans for higher education until the war is over. Yet even the military understands the importance of schooling. Professor John O. Neustadt of St. John’s College has been brought to Fort Meade, Md., to teach a class of 24 privates and officers about classic literature. First on the list: Homer’s “The Odyssey”—a tale about the Greek hero Odysseus traveling ten...

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US military steps in to halt strikes

As strikes across the U.S. slow down the economy, President Roosevelt has chosen to intervene: four times he has ordered the Army or Navy to take over striking factories. In the six months between December of 1941 and June of 1942, there were 1,200 recorded strikes, 270,000 strikers, and 2.3 million work days lost. Looking at war industries only, the numbers decrease slightly, with 581 strikes, 250,000 strikers and 1 million work days lost. Despite the current agreement negotiated by the War Labor Board (WLB) for major industrial unions to halt strikes in favor of contributing to the war...

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American reporters finally gain freedom after time in Tokyo prison

After six months imprisoned by the Japanese, seven American journalists are now reported safe in the Allied territory of Portuguese East Africa due to a successful prisoner exchange orchestrated by the United States. New York Times correspondent Otto D. Tolischus, who was stationed in Tokyo at the time of the Pearl Harbor attack, was one of the seven jailed Americans. He recalled how he was welcomed on the morning of Dec. 8 by four police officers barging into his bedroom with the orders: “Put on your coat; the procurator wants to see you.” He was placed in prison with...

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About This Site

World War 2.0 tries to imagine what the reporting of World War II might have looked like if the conflict were taking place today. Articles are based on information that would have been available to the press at the time, but they are written using contemporary journalistic style. The authors are all students at Seton Hall University, working with assistant professor of journalism Matthew Pressman.