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Women in Defense
Film still
Directed byJohn Ford
Written byEleanor Roosevelt
Produced byJohn Ford
Narrated byKatharine Hepburn
Distributed byWar Activities Committee
Release date
  • December 24, 1941 (1941-12-24)
Running time
18 minutes
CountryUnited States

Women in Defense is a 1941 short film produced by the Office of Emergency Management shortly before the United States entered the Second World War. It was directed by John Ford.

The Academy Film Archive preserved Women in Defense in 2008.[1] The film is part of the Academy War Film Collection, one of the largest collections of World War II era short films held outside government archives.[2]


Opening with a shot of a statue of "the pioneer woman who helped win a continent", the film briefly outlines the way in which women could help prepare the country for the possibility of war. Among the various way women could help were:

There is also a segment on the types of costumes women would wear while engaged in war work. At the end of the film, the narrator explains women are vital to securing a healthy American home life and raising children "which has always been the first line of defense".

See also


  1. ^ "Preserved Projects". Academy Film Archive.
  2. ^ "Academy War Film Collection". Academy Film Archive.