We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
 >   > 
American Girls, Beer, and Glenn Miller: GI Morale in World War II | [James J. Cooke]

American Girls, Beer, and Glenn Miller: GI Morale in World War II

As World War II dawned in Europe, General George C. Marshall, the new Army Chief of Staff, had to acknowledge that American society-and the citizens who would soon become soldiers-had drastically changed in the previous few decades. Almost every home had a radio, movies could talk, and driving in an automobile to the neighborhood soda fountain was part of everyday life. A product of newly created mass consumerism, the soldier of 1940 had expectations of material comfort, even while at war.
Regular Price:$19.95
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

As World War II dawned in Europe, General George C. Marshall, the new Army Chief of Staff, had to acknowledge that American society - and the citizens who would soon become soldiers - had drastically changed in the previous few decades. Almost every home had a radio, movies could talk, and driving in an automobile to the neighborhood soda fountain was part of everyday life. A product of newly created mass consumerism, the soldier of 1940 had expectations of material comfort, even while at war. Historian James J. Cooke presents the first comprehensive look at how Marshall's efforts to cheer soldiers far from home resulted in the enduring morale services that the Army provides still today.

Marshall understood that civilian soldiers provided particular challenges and wanted to improve the subpar morale services that had been provided to Great War doughboys. Frederick Osborn, a civilian intellectual, was called to head the newly formed morale branch, which quickly became the Special Services Division. Hundreds of on-post movie theaters showing first-run movies at reduced prices, service clubs where GIs could relax, and inexpensive cafeterias were constructed. The Army Exchange System took direction under Brigadier General Joseph Byron, offering comfort items at low prices; the PX sold everything from cigarettes and razor blades to low-alcohol beer in very popular beer halls.

The great civic organizations - the YMCA, the Salvation Army, the Jewish Welfare Board, and others - were brought together to form the United Service Organizations (USO). At USO Camp Shows, admired entertainers like Bob Hope, Bing Crosby, and Frances Langford brought home-style entertainment to soldiers within the war zones.

The Special Services Division, PX, and USO were crucial elements in maintaining GI morale, and Cooke’s work makes clear the lasting legacy of these efforts to boost the average soldier’s spirits almost a century ago.

©2012 The Curators of the University of Missouri (P)2014 Redwood Audiobooks

What the Critics Say

"Cooke uses numerous archival, primary, and secondary sources to explain the importance of positive morale to the war effort, and how the combined activities of the army and private initiative helped maintain that necessary ingredient to victory." (CHOICE)

"Cooke's examination of the Special Services and PX System during World War II, a subject previously overlooked by scholars, shows that these goods and services kept the armed forces' spirits up under the alienating conditions of global war." (Dennis Showalter, author of Patton and Rommel: Men of War in the Twentieth Century)

More from the same

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.5 (2 )
5 star
 (1)
4 star
 (0)
3 star
 (0)
2 star
 (1)
1 star
 (0)
Overall
3.5 (2 )
5 star
 (1)
4 star
 (0)
3 star
 (0)
2 star
 (1)
1 star
 (0)
Story
4.5 (2 )
5 star
 (1)
4 star
 (1)
3 star
 (0)
2 star
 (0)
1 star
 (0)
Performance


There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

    There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.