Cross Class Unity During The Blitz: A Non Existent Component Of The Myth Of The Blitz

2232 words - 9 pages

Before World War II, Britain was strictly divided into classes: the upper class, the middle class, and the lower working class. Once born into a class, it was almost impossible to leave; people were bound to classes for life. The structure was stern and rigid. George Orwell even called England (and by extension Britain) “the most class-ridden country under the sun.” Classes tolerated each other, but the “upper and middle class people were brought up to believe the lower classes dirty and inferior,” creating an environment of stark inequality (The Class System). The small upper class held the majority of the wealth and employed much of the large lower class as servants, paying them menial wages. The middle class, who consisted of doctors, shopkeepers, lawyers, and people in similar professions, remained sandwiched in the center. On September 7, 1940 the blitz began and bombs started to rain down on London. However, the force of the bombs did little to blast away the walls that separated and distinguished the classes.
Along with the blitz came the Myth of the Blitz, as explained by Angus Calder in his book, The Myth of the Blitz. The Myth of the Blitz was the idea that the people of London united across classes into a heroic force against the bombings and Nazi Germany, as advertised in the propaganda distributed by the British government. The Myth asserted that Londoners as a whole kept calm and carried on despite the massive destruction and high numbers of casualties. However, as with any myth, the Myth of the Blitz was not entirely based on fact and incorporated some invented ideas. Despite the Myth’s gross exaggerations, it still held a core of truth. The blitz did bring people of the same class together through shared experiences and suffering, though it was not at the cross-class level that the Myth of the Blitz and British propaganda showed. Inequality festered, as shown by the horrid conditions many lower class citizens faced. Class tensions flared and resentment increased. Classes kept to themselves more than ever, with the lower and working classes coming together to cope with the challenges they faced. The story of unprecedented cross-class unity was only part of the Myth of the Blitz, an attempt to show the enemy that Britain remained strong. Despite the falsities of the supposed cross-class unity, the idea of unity continued into the post-war period and resulted in the creation of a welfare state, promoting equality between all classes.
The bombing that started on September 7, 1940 devastated London. London was unprepared, with “only 92 anti-aircraft guns available to defend London” (Beckett, Remember the Blitz). As a result, 430 civilians were killed and 1,600 were injured on the first night. Thousands lost their homes. Loss of life and injury would continue until the blitz stopped on May 10, 1941. The damage and destruction affected many, and Charles Ritchie, a Canadian diplomat, described the situation: “English men and women of...

Find Another Essay On Cross-Class Unity During the Blitz: A Non-Existent Component of the Myth of the Blitz

The Ways the British Government Attempted to Hide the Effects of the Blitz from the People

1078 words - 4 pages The Ways the British Government Attempted to Hide the Effects of the Blitz from the People For the British civilians bearing the home front of the Blitz was both a frightening and surreal experience. In Britain, most people expect to be told the truth, and newspapers and radios are allowed to speak the facts. However once the country was at war it all changed, and the British people had to accept that the Government who

The Blitz and St Paul's Cathedral

4099 words - 16 pages casualties. 20,000 people were killed and 25,000 had been seriously injured. Much of London was left in ruins, and entire neighborhoods required rebuilding. It would take years to rebuild the physical city of London; however, the psyche of the people began recovery during the bombing. A SYMBOL EMERGES: ST. PAUL'S CATHEDRAL St. Paul's During the Blitz St. Paul's was struck several times during the Blitz. On September 12, 1940, a large bomb

Describe the effects of the blitz on everyday life in Britain?

610 words - 2 pages from the buildings that were hit and smoke which rised from the fires that burnt through the city. People carried on their daily routine as normally as they could whilst the roads were being opened up and buildings repaired.Another effect that The Blitz had on everyday life in Britain was that large numbers of people had to flee to The Underground, air raid shelters and a few to their Anderson shelters to escape the bombs and fires above

The Ways the British Government Tried to Hide the Effects of the Blitz from the British People

767 words - 3 pages this. The government used radio, newspapers, press, posters, film reels and the cinema to give information to the public, while still able to hold back any information seen to be damaging to the British war effort and morale through censorship, propaganda and distraction the government aimed to hide the effects of the blitz, and inflate British morale. Propaganda played a major role in the government hiding the effects of

Neurobiological Component Causing the Behavior of Psychopaths

2245 words - 9 pages abilities (i.e. decision-making) and an inability to utilize somatic emotional cues to infer potential rewards and more importantly punishments (Anderson & Kiehl, 2012; Weber et al., 2008). A third explanation is the fear dysfunction hypothesis (FDH) which infers psychopathy is caused by an unusual weak to non-existent fear of punishment which causes a lack of normal moral socialization. In other words, normal people are frightened by punishment

The Significance of Non-verbal Communication During Medical Consultation

3106 words - 12 pages recognize the significance of non-verbal communication between a doctor and his patient during medical consultation. This paper will concentrate on the doctor’s “body language” along with its implications that can lead to a positive or negative clinical outcome and patient experience. As the popular idiom states: “It takes two to tango.” As such, so too, does the act of communicating interpersonally. Initially, an individual transmits an internal

The Power of Myth

4019 words - 16 pages The Power of Myth "Why is Eurydice such a bitch?" was the comment asked of me during a lesson on the poem "Eurydice" by H.D. "Doesn't she realize that Orpheus loves her and is only trying to rescue her? Why is she so harsh to him?" It was during a unit on mythology that the students were reading H.D's poetryówe had recently completed the small "Orpheus and Eurydice" blurb in Edith Hamilton's Mythology when I came across H.D's effort and

Mystery of the Myth

1152 words - 5 pages A myth is a popular term which is commonly misused by people. Many people have tried to explain what a myth is, but due its fictitious nature it is not easy to explain what it is. The aim of this essay is to discuss this term, myth and investigate it in a deeper sense by revealing the complexity of the term and exploring the different meanings of the word. This will be done by distinguishing the different notions of myths, comparing the

The Myth of Sisyphus

2194 words - 9 pages Albert Camus' The Myth of Sisyphus is not simply a re-telling of the myth itself, but also an interpretation of the way in which the myth can be related to the life of humanity in general, and in particular to one's understanding and acceptance of the futility of life, which he does not consider to be negative per se. He looks at the nature of Sisyphus' character, the way in which he

The Myth Of Consumerism

1789 words - 7 pages strengths, serve as a potential weakness.It is our imaginations that advertising exploits, and it is our imaginations that religion and myth traditionally played the role of satiating, telling stories that have morals to them, lessons to be learned. Now consumerism fulfills this role. The consumer ideology serves as the golden rule, advertising serves as sermons, products serve as our idoltry, and just as religion instills faith at an early age, so

The Myth of Adulthood

556 words - 2 pages The phenomenon of growing up doesn’t have to happen when you are thirteen. You don’t have to be eighteen and be fully grown up. It occurs when a person is ready to mature mentally. What does growing up mean? It’s not your bones growing; it’s your mind altering and developing. There are so many stages that everyone must go through to become an “adult”. Few people complete these steps by experiencing life and on the other hand some never do. All

Similar Essays

The Blitz In Britain Essay

5735 words - 23 pages . They say their morale (their spirit and attitude was good. Other writers believe that much of what was said and written about the high morale of the British is myth (a false impression) rather than truth. This assignment presents you with sources during the Blitz and afterwards and gives you the opportunity to decide for yourself. 1. Study Source A What Can You Learn from Source A about the response of the British

The Blitz, Sources Questions. Essay

2919 words - 12 pages the bravery and unity of the British people. I can conclude from this that it is a biased source.2.Study Sources B,C,How useful are sources B and C in helping you to understand the effects of the Blitz on the people in Britain.Source B is very useful in helping me to understand the effects of the Blitz on the people in Britain because it shows us that not everything had a happy ending as is shown in Source C. It is also useful because it helps me

Bombing London, The London Blitz Essay

1276 words - 5 pages The destruction of British cities during the German Luftwaffe attacks was the source of a major British national experience during World War II. Bombing was used in World War II against nonhuman military targets, against enemy troops, and against civilian populations (Dukievel and Spielvogel 758). The internet has proven to be a powerful resource in the retrieval of many websites and personal anecdotes of the Blitz. The internet has provided

The Non Existent Nationality Essay

795 words - 3 pages wave that was the industrial revolution swept across Europe, and pulled many under its riptide of poverty and exploitation. So with an ill-conceived movement and no nation, Slavic unity was but a product of an over-idealistic people.Some might say that the Russians were supporting Pan-Slavism selflessly but those people would be naïve. No one with the power to give the Slavs what they asked for truly recognized the Slavs as a