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Lecture 13

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McMaster University
Labour Studies
David Goutor

Lecture 13- World War 1 and Post-War Upheaval October 29, 2013 Trauma and Transformation - Society’s ability to produce was getting better, but ww1 wipes that out. It leads to a deep and dark future. It strains societies to lengths that has never been seen before. Total war: all measures in society are organized to win the war (food, human, physical, etc.) - War measures act – the scope of government expands hugely. Emergency law saying that the government can go to any measures to take care of society - War fever – everything in society becomes political, enormous rallies of troops and civilians that are confident they will wipe out the enemy - Canada lost 60,000 soldiers – the greatest lost ever experienced in Canada - “Win-the-war” sentiment- the strain of the war was hard, all the sacrifices that need to be made have to be done in order to win the war. No excuses. “If the Germans win you will be even more unhappy after the war”. - Conscription crisis – whether there should be forced military service. Most provinces says yes but Quebec says no - Broad impacts – Canada is not the only country that faces this problem. Britain, France, Russia all strain themselves during war. Bolshevik Revolution takes over Russia and creates a workers socialist republic. Russia now has a communist government. Early Wartime - 1913-1915 Depression- labourers in rough shape becomes of depression, times are bad. - Plans and outcomes- a lot of labour leaders were hoping to resist war effort - Post 1915: Growth – vast number of workers go into the army services, so jobs are open. You also get a huge mobilization of the economy in order to supply the army. You have to make the weapons and the army clothes, etc. The crowds of people looking for work earlier are now getting smaller and smaller. Job openings are huge. Divisions - Craft leaders are mostly conservative - As the war goes on there is an increasing radical movement, as the war goes in it gets bigger and more radical - Conservative patriots - Radicalized element Issues - Propaganda – spreads everywhere (U.S.A, Canada, Britain), this effort was very effective, raised the spirits of the public, not just about the Germans, it was also about making the war about something, defending British Democracy and rewarding people who make the sacrifice - Profiteering- people making a buck off the war, a lot of profiteering, couldn’t rely on Canadian goods, spoke to the average person - Inflation – pric
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