Is Rosie the Riveter best thought of as a myth or propaganda?

Propaganda is information that is not objective and is used primarily to influence an audience and further an agenda.

Myths are the stories people tell to explain nature, history, and customs.

  • $\begingroup$ why cant she be both $\endgroup$ – anon Nov 9 '17 at 18:28
  • $\begingroup$ Maybe the Mythology stack for this one? $\endgroup$ – Willk Nov 9 '17 at 18:54
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    $\begingroup$ What does this have to do with building a fictional world? $\endgroup$ – sphennings Nov 9 '17 at 18:57

Rosie the Riveter (and Wendi the Welder, and others) cannot be thought as a myth, 'cause they were very, very real.

They were surely used in propaganda, but that is not their essence, even if what we remember today is almost exclusively the "propaganda sugar-coated" images.

You should think of those women as icons for a certain kind of strong-willed women who didn't scorn filling in in "unladylike" jobs... and sometimes discovered they loved it.

  • $\begingroup$ A good example of this is the female "computers" that did calculations for NACA/NASA and other groups in the days before electronic computers. $\endgroup$ – jamesqf Nov 9 '17 at 19:12
  • $\begingroup$ Rosie the riveter was not real, she was a propagandist icon created by trends at the time for a purpose. Her appearance was inspired by people but ultimately not an actual person. The idea was to convince woman they were strong enough and needed for factory labor which was unheard of at the that era. $\endgroup$ – anon Nov 10 '17 at 18:24

Your question uses rather loaded language which also appears in the wikipedia entry on propaganda. (I don't know if you are quoting it without reference or if both quote a third source ...) Wikipedia is often helpful, but it is not an objective source, especially when it comes to contentious entries.

  • Rosie the Riveter was part of a deliberate propaganda campaign during wartime.
  • Propaganda usually has negative connotations when it comes from the other side, positive ones if it comes from your side. The word propaganda was used by the Nazis, and it is part of the term agitprop used by the communists. Meanwhile Hollywood produced movies like Mission to Moscow because of their artistic merit, I guess.

What does this question have to do with worldbuilding? When you describe a world in a story or a game setting, and make choices available (or unavailable) to the characters, you write a piece of propaganda. In the best stories this is subtle, and critics will argue for ages. In the worst stories the writer decided to be unsubtle, or didn't even realize what he did, and the story is just crap.

  • $\begingroup$ "What does this question have to do with Worldbuilding." My thoughts too. $\endgroup$ – Obie 2.0 Nov 10 '17 at 2:40
  • $\begingroup$ @Obie2.0, because worldbuilding is propaganda? When I set my story in a postapocalyptic world that is crap because of global warning, hopefully I'm telling an entertaining adventure, but there is also a message. If I tell a story where the rugged individualist sets out to build a farmstead away from society, that is also a message. There is always a message. If I think that there is no message in my fiction, that's because I have swallowed someone else's message hook, line, and sinker, and do not even see that there could be another viewpoint. That has to end badly. $\endgroup$ – o.m. Nov 10 '17 at 5:45
  • $\begingroup$ I'm with the close voters, sorry. $\endgroup$ – Obie 2.0 Nov 10 '17 at 7:10
  • $\begingroup$ @Obie2.0, no need to apologise. The question is certainly no good fit for Worldbuilding. $\endgroup$ – o.m. Nov 10 '17 at 7:18

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