On the Home Front
Melbourne in Wartime: 1939-1945. For the people of Melbourne these were years of social dislocation and increased government interference in all aspects of daily life. This is the story of their work, leisure, relationships and their fears. By 1942 the city was pitted with air raid trenches, and in the half-light of the brownout Melbournians awaited a Japanese invasion. As women left the home to replace men in factories and offices, the traditional roles of mothers and wives were challenged. The presence of thousands of American soldiers in Melbourne raised new questions about Australian nationalism and identity, and the 'carnival spirit' of many on the home front created anxiety about the issues of drunkenness, gambling and sexuality. Kate Darian-Smith's classic study draws upon the memories of men and women who lived through those turbulent years when society grappled with the tensions between a restrictive government and new opportunities for freedom. Second edition. Soft cover, 303 pages.