World War II was a time of tremendous global turmoil and change. In the United States, dramatic cultural, industrial and interpersonal shifts began to shape a new national identity which would change the country forever. Among the myriad of changes experienced by Americans during this time was a massive shift in the industrial complex, a dramatic re-imagining of the role of women in society, and the development of new racisms and stereotypes within the national discourse. .
The United States' initial preparation for defense of a potential Nazi attack and preparation for a future overseas engagement required a massive restructuring of the nation's industrial aims. Peacetime industry began to give way to wartime endeavors. Factories built parts and shipped them to other factories to assemble into the final products. The country needed ammunition, tanks, aircraft, ships, bombs, protective gear, and many other wartime necessities. American industrialists invested in the development of new technologies that allowed the production in greater quantities and at a quicker pace. These endeavors provided a huge boost to the economy of the United States, advanced industrial technology, and provided more work opportunities for Americans. Most Americans were supportive of these changes and took great pride in the industrial prowess of their country.
Another major cultural change brought on as a direct result of the United States' involvement in World War II was the role of women in society. For years, women had been entering the workforce in growing numbers; however, they remained largely constrained to specific gender roles. .
The war changed this in a number of ways, with the first change being the aforementioned increased demands in the country's industrial needs. This created the need for more skilled laborers. Next, with many men leaving to fight abroad in the war, the loss of these existing craftsmen and laborers created even more vacancies.