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War in the West

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Martin Horn

Lecture Thirteen 261011Living Standards in WW1 y This war in terms of its duration and length required of the belligerents that if they were to be successful the home front was very much a part of the outcome of the conflicty It was intimately linked with the outcome of the wary Food was a central preoccupation of lifegetting it paying for it and assuring that you have enough of it o One of the gauges of a states success in a war like the first world war was how effective was the state in providing citizens with a steady and reliable supply of foodo When food is in short supply its price rises dramaticallyo If prices rise dramatically than wages have to rise to keep pace This furls inflationIf inflation goes unchecked it will destroy living standardsy These questions are related to what brought down the Russian empirefood riots by women on the home front This contributed to the Russian revolutions Germanythe main state of the central powersy Before the war most historians feel that Germany was by large selfsufficient in food stocksy The Germans on the whole could produce enough within its borders to feed the populationy Certain kinds of goods were exported potatoes an ryey They had to import certain kinds of foodfishy But on the whole the German condition in terms of food supply seems to be reasonably healthyy This proves to be an allusiono They start to experience problems of quality and quantity in their food supplyo This happens quicklyo The economic blockage cuts off their fishing ports and has a relationship to the struggles with food supply but there is something else going ono German state make poor decisions in terms of resources and where they should goHindenburg programmey Manpower for farming was being drafted into the armyy When it wasnt going into the army it was going into jobs needed in industry for the wary The Germans in this war do not use womeno The overall labour pool on the farm is diminishingy You need raw materials o Fertilizero The German chemical industry was the most advanced in the worldo Fertilizers are also critical in manufacturing explosiveso Increasingly the raw ingredient needed for fertilizers are being used for the war insteady You need horseso This is still a horsedrawn farm sectoro Increasingly there is machinery but not commono Horses are critically to the war effort o There is a shortage of them
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