World War II

Start Your Free Trial

Did World War I have a greater impact on American society than World War II?

Expert Answers info

pholland14 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2016

write1,538 answers

starTop subjects are History, Literature, and Social Sciences

World War II had a far larger impact on society that World War I. World War II ended the Great Depression, as nearly every family either sent someone to make munitions, grow food, or fight the war itself. The government took an active role in rationing, and hoarding was a punishable crime. Japanese Americans were moved off the West Coast and sent to internment camps for the duration of the war. Movie stars such as Clark Gable helped fight the war and also sold war bonds; there were many more war bonds sold in World War II than World War I. Women went to war in support roles during this war.

Also, people participated in scrap drives and victory gardens. For four years, both theaters of the war were in the news and the topic of conversation. The end of the war saw the popularization of air travel, and many Americans had savings they could spend on consumer goods. The end of the war also brought on the Baby Boom as soldiers came back home from the front. The Baby Boomers are still one of the most influential demographics in America today in terms of voting power and pension costs. The veterans of World War II also received the G.I. Bill, while the veterans of World War I received little if anything—some of them becoming Bonus Marchers of the Great Depression.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial
D. Reynolds eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2016

write8,900 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

World War II had a much greater impact on United States society than World War I for several reasons. First, our involvement in supplying the Allied war effort, which started long before we declared war, came at the end of a Great Depression, the worst economic crisis in US history. As the federal government began buying massive amounts of war materials, such as guns and planes to ship overseas, factories needed workers. Full employment returned, and this finally ended the devastating depression. American society became more vigorous, happy, and hopeful as people had money to spend or, after war rationing began, to save.

Second, while the US was the ascending world power at the start of the 20th century, WWII made that fact obvious. By the end of the war, Great Britain passed the superpower baton to the US. The 20th century became the "American century." American society was victorious, confident, and prosperous. We had defeated not just an enemy, but what was understood as evil incarnate, and we felt very good about what we stood for and who we were.

WWI did have an impact on US society, bringing in women's rights and, for a decade, prosperity, but its impact was not as long lasting or profound as that of WWII. 

check Approved by eNotes Editorial
pohnpei397 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2009

write35,413 answers

starTop subjects are History, Literature, and Social Sciences

World War II had a much greater impact on American society than World War I did. 

One major impact of WWII was the movement of women into the labor force.  This happened much more in WWII than in WWI because the war went on longer and drew more men into the Armed Forces.   Another major impact of WWII was technological.  This war involved much more technology than WWI did, bringing American society things like air travel.  Finally, WWII had a much greater effect on the American psyche.  It consumed the US for four years, changing every aspect of life for a much longer time than WWI did.  Its impact on Americans’ attitudes lasted well beyond the end of the war.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

deathbeast354 | Student

World war II had the bigger impact than world war I

We(the americans) droped a huge bomb on hiorshima,japan and it caused japan to give up on having hawaii.

Unlock This Answer Now