Women factory workers solder fuse boxes at a table in a munitions factory. Source: National Film Board of Canada/Library and Archives Canada, WRM 3828.
Canada’s role in the Second World War was considerably larger than any previous overseas conflict the country had faced. This so-called “total war” involved the mobilization of people and resources under the expanded power of the federal government. State propaganda played an important role in the war mobilization effort in a number of different areas including, recruitment, conservation, and even counter-espionage.
In this module, you will watch a selection of films produced by the National Film Board of Canada during the Second World War and consider the different ways in which the Canadian government used film as a tool of propaganda.
- National Film Board of Canada. “Proudest Girl in the World” Directed by Julian Roffman, 1944.
- National Film Board of Canada. “Empty Rooms Mean Idle Machines” Directed by Philip Ragan, 1942.
- National Film Board of Canada. “Front of Steel” Directed by John McDougall, 1940.
- National Film Board of Canada. “Women Are Warriors” Directed by Jane Marsh, 1942.
- National Film Board of Canada. “Labour Front” 1943.
- National Film Board of Canada. “Keep Your Mouth Shut” Directed by Norman McLaren, 1944.