Q: What does the WASP program mean historically?|
The WASP are important to us historically in several different ways. First
it's an incredibly interesting story. It's an unexpected war story really.
We're accustomed to men going off to battle, we're accustomed to Teddy
Roosevelt leading charges up San Juan Hill we all can recall the war films of
the 50s and 60s that show Gregory Peck leading officers into battle and
debating the issues of leadership. If you say the word "solider", you think
"male", if you say the word "pilot" you think "male" and so here's a wonderful
story where all of our expectations are twisted. That when you say the word
"pilot" you get the word "girl" - they didn't say women then. When you say the
word "soldier" or almost a soldier, again you get the word "female." That's
extraordinarily interesting to us because we debate this question what are the
appropriate roles for men and women in our society? What can men and women do?
What is the best way of organizing our lives that allow us the greatest levels
of satisfaction. And the traditional categories have been breaking down really
over the past 50 years and so we're intrigued by this story right at the
beginning. The point at which we see as a turning point in the 20th
century we have this story of some of the first women to challenge the
stereotypes, the norms.
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