Women in Nazi Germany

Women in Nazi Germany

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Women in Nazi Germany

  • All Nazi leaders were men and it was a male dominated organisation
  • Hitler had a traditional view on the role of women as wife and mother
  • Many women agreed with him and thought the proper role of women was to support there husband
  • There was also resentment to working women as they were keeping men out of jobs
  • Alarmed at the falling birth rate Hitler offered financial incentives to couples who had at least four children
  • If you had eight children you would receive a 'gold cross'
  • Posters and radio broadcasts celebrated the ideas of motherhood and home building
  • The German Maidens League and school reinforced these ideas and focused on physical health and housekeeping skills
  • With all of this encouragement the birth rate increased by 5 per thousand from 1933-1939
  • There was also an increase in pregnancies outside marriage and these girls were looked after in state maternity hostels
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Important Women in Nazi Germany

  • There were some prominent women in Nazi Germany including film producers and the head of the Nazi Women's Bureau although she wasn't included in major Nazi discussion
  • Many working class girls and women gained the chance to travel and meet new people through the organisation
  • Overall opportunities for women were limited
  • Married professional women were forced to give up there jobs and stay at home with their families
  • In the late 1930s the Nazis had to do an about turn as they suddenly needed women workers because there supply of unemployed men was drying up so many women had to struggle with work and there family responsibilities
  • However, even in the crisis years of 1942-45 when industry was struggling to cope with the demand for war supplies, Nazi policy on women were still torn between their traditional stereotypes of the mother and the needs of the workplace eg. there was no chance for German women to serve in the armed forces as there was in Allied countries
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