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World War II

From Spy to Spatula to the Small Screen

When I was in third grade, I had to choose a famous role model to research and present to my class. Naturally, I chose Julia Child – not because I was an aspiring chef or because I wanted an excuse to buy a red wig – but because I left the theater after seeing “Julie & Julia” (2009) absolutely fascinated by her legacy; both inside the kitchen, and beyond its walls. A female public figure with a personality as strong as hers was rare during the 1950s, and her role as a volunteer spy during World War II taught me that no one is just one thing. Even though history often highlights people solely for what they were most famous for, it’s important to look beyond that and explore their multiplicity of talents and contributions to society. 

Alice Babette Toklas moves in permanently with Gertrude Stein.

September 9, 1910
Alice Babette Toklas heard distinct chiming when she met Gertrude Stein.

Angelica Balabanoff

Rebelling against her privileged upbringing, Angelica Balabanoff embraced socialism and rose to become one of the most celebrated activists and politicians of her day.

Long-lost poem by war heroine Hannah Szenes is found.

September 2, 2012

A poem by WWII hero Hannah Szenes was discovered 68 years after her death.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "World War II." (Viewed on September 24, 2018) <https://jwa.org/tags/world-war-ii>.

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