To What Extent Was Ww1 A Total War?

642 Words3 Pages
Total war is a military conflict in which nations mobilize all available resources in order to destroy another nation's ability to engage in war. The practice of total war has been in use for centuries, but it was only in the middle to the end of 19th century that total war was identified as a separate class of warfare. There are several reasons of why Total War was recognized in the 19th century. The main reason is industrialization. As countries' natural and capital resources grew, it became clear that some forms of conflict demanded more resources than others. Additionally, this is the time when warfare was becoming more mechanized. A factory in a city would have more to do with warfare than it did before. The factory itself would become a target, because it contributed to the war effort. It follows as well that the factory's workers would also be targets. World War One gave birth to total war in the industrial age when huge armies of soldiers faced each other across battlefields that had been made horribly lethal by technological advances in weaponry. Once the war began, the countries involved mobilized their entire populations and economic resources to achieve victory on the battlefield. The term home front was used for the first time during World War I and perfectly symbolized this new concept of a war in which the civilian population behind the lines was directly and critically involved in the war. Young men were removed from production jobs, and were replaced by women. Rationing occurred on the home fronts. One of the features of Total War in Britain was the use of propaganda posters to divert all attention to the War on the home front. Posters were used to influence people's decisions about what to eat and what occupations to take, and to change the attitude of support towards the war effort. As young men left the farms for the front, domestic food
Open Document