Tags: Strong Response EssaysAmerican Literature Essays And OpinionsJ Keith Rogers DissertationSchool Goals EssaysDr Weitz ThesisGraduate School Admission EssaysDissertation Defense Tips
Testamentary letters, written by soldiers for fear of death in military service and often deposited at home in case the worst happened, gave encouragement, advice, and instructions from beyond the grave.Mostly, it was economic considerations and competing influences on youths, in the form of peer pressure or new opportunities for earning money, that would thwart parental control.Change and continuity marked belligerent societies’ norms and values during the First World War.
Any consideration of the question of the war’s impact on authority relationships within Europe’s families should begin by recognizing the basic resilience of the family as a social unit and a focus of attachment in the face of the upheaval of war and during its uncertain aftermath.
With some degree of adaptation, the bonds of marriage and kinship, even if they had been alternately burdensome or solacing in the pre-war world, generally endured and provided a framework for reintegration into normality afterwards.
Structural factors such as class, gender, political ideology, and religion helped and hindered values change.
The concept of habitus elaborated by sociologist Pierre Bourdieu (1930-2002) can help to understand such an ebb and flow of norms and values in First World War Europe.
The absence of male authority figures, when combined with other factors, challenged traditional norms about youth behaviour, especially that of boys and male youths, even though the phenomenon was neither a uniquely urban nor male one.
At first, the separation of children from their fathers might have seemed to reinforce the idea of his authority and centrality in the life of the family.
Authority relationships within families were, however, often tested by the First World War.
The relationship revolved not just around the question of the authority of the father but also that of the mother in relation to children and dependents; the enforced absence of fathers for long periods was acutely felt at the time and had an impact on the norms and values relating to youth.
Non-marital relationships received pragmatic state recognition withheld before the war.
Rhetoric of sacrifice and restraint, backed up by law, ordained norms for personal consumption, as seen in the regulation of alcohol and of sexuality, just as a coarse egalitarianism drove attacks on profiteering.