Moral Norms and Values During the World War I



World War I is a memorable part of history that is marked by change and stability. The aggressive and confrontational societies' norms and values in the First World War have significantly influenced our way of living. Let us take a look at the moral norms and values during the war that defined the society and the lives of the people affected by the aftermath of war.


Family

During the First World War, soldiers leave their families for a long time. The uncertainty of whether a father comes home and leads a family is common during WWI. Many youths have grown fatherless and distant from their parents. During the war, a family is still considered the basic unit of society. Growing up in a fatherless family made it hard for mothers to raise children to uphold acceptable values and behaviors. The question of who is in authority at home becomes an issue.


In some cases, a father returns at home, but war's psychological effects inevitably affect the family's relationship. Some soldiers return home alive and safe, but they are haunted by the events and circumstances they are fighting for their country. The book by Eleanor Collins entitled The Last Chapter depicts how a family affected by WWI affects each family member's connection. Although the book was fictional, the author described important aspects and scenarios during WW1 that influenced home relationships.





Marriage

It is sad to say that marriage the most compromised values during the First World War. During those times, society implies that consensual sex within the confines of marriage was acceptable. In those times, consensual sex was a reward to men.


Fixed marriages were also common among the upper-class society to maintain power, wealthy authority amongst the affluent people. Pre-marital sex was common among the middle class due to the problems at home-absentee fathers, distant parental relationships, or even compromised marriage.

Divorce was also allowed at that time, but it was not an option for many middle-class families because it was pricey. Divorce for the higher class society was not an option because of the stigma and the fear of losing power and authority.


Not all marriages in WWI ends up miserable; many married soldiers return to their wives and children to go on with their lives. Many wives stay at home and wait patiently and loyally to their husbands despite the uncertainty of how long they will spend apart.




The pain and the heartache brought by the First World War defined the values and norms of the generations that came after. The four heartbreaking years of war that caused casualties among the civilians and the military was a bitter memory to remember. It was not an issue whether who won or lost the war, but the issue is the things that we have learned from those four years that defined our moral norms and values.


40 views0 comments