the Roaring Twenties.

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 the Roaring Twenties.

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مُساهمةموضوع: the Roaring Twenties.   2011-08-09, 19:47

The Roaring Twenties


Americans, in the years following the
end of World War I found themselves in an era, where the people simply
wished to detach themselves from the troubles of Europeans and the rest
of the world. During the years of the Twenties, the economy was
prosperous, there was widespread social reform, new aspects of culture
were established, and people found better ways to improve their
lifestyle and enjoy life.

The 1920's exemplified the changing
attitudes of American's toward foreign relations, society, and leisure
activities. Following the end of World War I, many Americans demanded
that the United States stay out of European affairs in the future. The
United States Senate even refused to accept the Treaty of Versailles
which officially ended World War I and provided for the establishment of
the League of Nations. The Senate chose to refuse the Treaty in the
fear that it could result in the involvement of the United States in
future European wars. Americans simply did not wish to deal with, nor
tolerate the problems of Europe and abroad.

There were many
problems running rampant throughout the country following the conclusion
of the war. One of the greatest problems which arose was the Red Scare
which was seen as an international communist conspiracy that was blamed
for various protest movements and union activities in 1919 and 1920. The
Red Scare was touched off by a national distrust of foreigners. Many
Americas also kept a close eye on the increasing activities of the Klu
Klux Klan who were terrorizing foreigners, blacks, Jews and Roman
Catholics.
Once Americans put the war behind them, they were able to
forget the problems of European affairs, and focus on the country, their
town, and themselves. Americans found themselves in a period of reform,
both socially and culturally. Many feared that morality had crumbled
completely. Before World War I, women wore their hair long, had ankle
length dresses, and long cotton stockings. In the twenties, they wore
short, tight dresses, and rolled their silk stockings down to their
knees. They wore flashy lipstick and other cosmetics. Eventually, women
were even granted the right to vote with the passing of the 19th
Amendment. It was up to this time period that women were not seen as an
important aspect in American society. As if rebelling from the previous
position of practically non-existence, women changed their clothing,
their fashion, and even cut their hair shorter into bobs which were very
similar to the style of men. The similarities were no mere coincidence,
but an attempt of the women in American society pushing towards
equality. Once the women had the right to vote with the passing of the
19th Amendment, they did not just sit back. The women of the 1920's
strived for a position of equality for both men and women in society.

Literature,
art, and music also reflected the nations changing values. There were
many famous authors, playwrights, musicians and artists which left their
mark during the Twenties. Sinclair Lewis authored Main Street (1920), a
book which attacked what he considered the dull lives and narrow minded
attitudes of people in a small town. Another great author of the time
was F. Scott Fitzgerald whose works included The Beautiful and Damned,
and Tales of the Jazz Age. F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby,
exemplified the American Dream. The story shows the often misconception
of the American Dream being a life of prosperity, parties, happiness,
and utopian places. The book uncovers the characters' pursuit of this
dream only to discover the American Dream as the American Tragedy. Many
Americans who immigrated to the United States in the 20's were believing
the same misconception, only to later find the hidden truth that the
American Dream was not all what it was cracked up to be.

One of
the greatest American authors to emerge from the Twenties was Ernest
Hemingway. Some of Hemingway's most noted works in the Twenties included
Across the River and into the Trees, and In Our Time. Many of
Hemingway's finest works presented the attitudes and experiences of the
era's so called "last generation."

Americans had a hunger for
news in the Twenties. Every day they would flock to the newsstand for
the latest information. They would find the information they needed from
various newspapers and periodicals. From the New York Times they got
top-notch foreign correspondence. In the New York World they could read
Franklin P. Adams, Heywood Broun and other outstandingly witty
columnists. In the Twenties the expose of evil-doing in high places
became the mark of a good newspaper: The St. Louis Post- Dispatch forced
an allegedly corrupt federal judge to resign; the Indianapolis Times
exposed Indiana's Ku Klux Klan leader as a murderer. Newspaper
circulation boomed in the Twenties. The total for the nation was about
25 million when the decade started and about 40 million at its close,
(Cronon 341). Tabloids and magazines such as The Saturday Evening Post,
National Geographic, and the Literary Digest also became very big during
the Twenties. One author noted for his work during the Twenties was
H.L. Mencken in his witty magazine "The American Mercury" which
ridiculed the antics of dim-witted politicians, and prohibitionists.

The
artists and composers were inspired by both tradition and changes in
American life. Joseph Stella painted soaring lines and precise geometric
patterns to represent skyscrapers, his favorite theme. George Gershwin
became one of the most popular composers of the 1920's. Two of his best
known orchestral works "Rhapsody in Blue," and "An American in Paris,"
feature many elements of jazz. In the Twenties, Jazz was becoming very
popular. Americans sang and danced to all of their favorite songs. Every
time the turntable was flipped on, Americans just had to dance. It was a
new feeling of pleasure, and enjoyment which came hand in hand with the
beginnings of jazz music in America. With jazz becoming big, Americans
veered away from traditional song and dance and began exploring other
types of music such as jazz. The cheerful, light, easy feeling
accompanied with jazz music was just an extension of American feelings
during the Twenties; joyous and free spirited.

Americans found
many ways to entertain themselves in the 1920's. They flocked to the
theaters to see such stars as Charlie Chaplin, Mary Pickford and Rudolph
Valentino. Other Americans swarmed to baseball stadiums to watch such
top athletes as home run slugger Babe Ruth and boxing champion Jack
Dempsey.

Radio also opened the doors for new entertainment such
as nightly shows for audiences to listen to. Parents and their children
would sit around the radio listening to such nightly comedy shows as
"Amos and Andy". Families across the United States would gather around
the radio to get the latest news and information from around the world.
The radio gave the news hungry Americans what they wanted and took
America closer to a more technologically advanced society.

When
the Twenties rolled around, Americans found themselves engulfed in a
bolstering economy. In the 1920's business was an obsession. Economic
expansion created booming business profits which in turn raised the
standard of living for most Americans. Large businesses were expanding.
In 1920, for example, Woolworth had 1,111 stores. In 1929 they expanded
to 1,825. J.C. Penney expanded from 312 stores to 1,395, (Time-Life
102). Small business entrepreneurs took advantage of the good times as
they began popping up all over the United States. Americans were moving
into a period of economic prosperity. Even industrial workers, whose
strikes for higher pay had availed them little in previous decades,
benefited. From 1922-1929, the national income was up 40% from $60.7
billion to $87.2 billion, (Cronon 341). The use of labor saving
machinery in factories and on farms enabled workers to produce more
goods faster and less expensively. This led to higher amounts of
production. At some points, the American consumer could not buy the
goods as fast as they were produced. Since the economy was in such good
shape, many Americans could afford to purchase refrigerators, washing
machines, and radios. Low income families could afford to buy an
inexpensive Model T, which Henry Ford developed in 1908. The number of
passenger cars in the United States jumped from fewer then 7 million in
1919 to about 23 million in 1929, (Cronon 341). Traffic jammed the
nations highways and created still another need for businesses, roadside
restaurants, tire manufacturers and gas stations. Standard Oil gas
stations grew from 12 in 1920 to 1,000 by 1929, (Time-Life 102). With
all the expansion, and the economy doing well, business became the
foundation of society. Calvin Coolidge epitomized the time when he was
quoted saying, "The business of America is business," (Cronon 342).

The
Stock-Market became a very important aspect of the economy in the
1920's. As the economy was flourishing, many Americans found it a
practical investment to put money into the Stock Exchange as the return
could be quite large. John J. Rascob, the vice-president of General
Motors Corporation during the Twenties, declared that anyone that put
$15 dollars a month in the stock-market could make $80,000 dollars in
twenty years. It was such promises of these that convinced many
Americans to buy stocks. Stock prices rose gradually in the early 20's,
but skyrocketed in 1927, and 1928. Average stock prices tripled from
1925 to 1929. The high profits seemed to confirm President Hoover's
pledge of a new era of abundance, during which "poverty will be banished
from this nation," (Cronon 341). The nations illusion of unending
prosperity was shattered on October 24, 1929. Worried investors who
bought stock on credit began to sell. This led to the development of a
panic amongst investors. The panic only worsened things and on October
24, 1929, stockholders sold a record 16,410,030 shares. By mid-November,
stock prices had plunged 40%. The crash of the Stock Market led to the
Great Depression. The depression was the worst in the history of the
United States and proved to be a terrible price to pay for the false
sense of prosperity and national well -being of the roaring Twenties.
Many Americans felt that they were untouchable in society. The thought
of the American Dream cemented in the heads of thousands of Americans
overshadowed the real risk of business in the United States. When the
American people saw that the economy was flourishing, they felt that
they were on a pedestal, protected from the river of uncertainty,
economic depression and the failure of the American Dream.

Many
Americans found a way to improve their lifestyle. Whether it had been
through hard work on the job, or even with a struck of luck on the stock
market. There were, however, many people who found other ways to make a
living. Some of these ways were prohibited. With the passing of the
18th Amendment, it became illegal to manufacture or sell alcoholic
beverages. Thousands of Americans began making liquor at home which
quickly became known as bathtub rum. Gangsters disregarded the law and
found it quite profitable bootlegging liquor from Canada and selling it
to illegal bars known as speakeasies. Police were often bribed not to
intervene in the activities of smuggling. Bootlegging, although
prosperous to the ringleader, was a dangerous activity in which over 500
gangland murders occurred as underworld mobs fought for control of the
liquor traffic. (Time Life 166)

The United States in the Twenties
was still a young country which had not yet established itself an
identity. Was the image of the United States going to be that of the
American Dream? The image of a successful entrepreneur whose once
insignificant business exploded into a nationwide corporation? The image
of the stock holder who hit it big on the market? The image of the
local supermarket owner whose business grew to a chain from coast to
coast? What about the bootlegging capital of the world? The truth was,
there was no image established yet for the nation. During the Twenties,
everybody was trying to make it to the top with their own techniques and
methods, whether it have been through such positive activities as
investing, or negative activities as bootlegging.
There were many
famous Americans who left a positive mark on the history of the United
States during the Twenties. One of the most famous was Charles A.
Lindbergh, an aviator who is noted in his achievement of being the first
person to fly solo non-stop across the Atlantic Ocean. Lindbergh's feat
gained him immediate, international fame. Lindbergh and his wife paved
the way for future airlines by charting routes for aircraft. While
Lindbergh was contributing to aviation, other Americans had some
exceptional contributions. One scientist became famous for his work with
rockets. In 1926, Scientist Robert H. Goddard fired liquid fueled
rockets into the atmosphere. It was he who laid the basis of modern
rocketry.

There were many new inventions which were created
during the Twenties, as well as new methods and techniques. Department
stores began introducing installment payment plans to their customers.
The idea of "Buy Now and Pay Later" became very popular. Department
stores saw an increase in sales of the radio in the Twenties. The value
of radio sales in the United States jumped from $60 million in 1922 to
$850 million in 1929, (Time-Life 101). The radio revolutionized the
nations economy by giving new ways of advertising products, rather then
newspapers and magazines. Department stores profited by the radio
through commercials which persuaded listeners to spend a larger portion
of their income on their products.

The Twenties began as an era
were Americans were feeling good. They had forgotten about the troubles
of Europeans and began to better their lifestyles. Americans were
finding new ways to earn a better living through an overall period of
booming business and higher wages for workers. Many Americans began
investing in the stock exchange in the hope of having a prosperous
return, while others chose to make their fortune in such illegal
activities as bootlegging. As fortunes were earned, and fortunes were
lost the reality of the American Dream was sinking in. The dream of
coming to the country and making it big came true for some Americans,
but to others, it was not as sweet. Many lost all they had while trying
to make it. People came to the United States having the idea that no
matter what happened, they were going to make it. There dreams were
however short-lived as the so called American Dream surrounded them and
sucked them into the dark side of reality. Those who were not perceptive
enough to see that business was risky, failed. In this era, Americans
soon learned that the American Dream was not all it was cracked up to
be.
The Twenties showed a revolution in art, literature and music,
which greatly reflected the nations changing values. Americans found new
ways to entertain themselves, enjoying new dances such as the
Charleston, popular for the time, and watching such sporting events as
baseball, and boxing. Famous people emerged in the Twenties leaving
their mark on history, just as new inventions were created
revolutionizing even the simplest of activities for years to come. The
Twenties were a fabulous decade outlined by a booming economy, and big
business finding new ways to become bigger. New stores were popping up
all over the nation and stores that were already around, grew into
chains which stretched the length of the United States. All of these
outstanding events, people, inventions, and happenings occurred only to
be overshadowed by the Stock Market Crash in 1929. The Crash was the
worst in the countries history and blanketed its negative effects over
the positive happenings of the previous decade. The Crash, which carried
the Great Depression into the 1930's was a nightmarish end to a
fairytale era of prosperity and happiness. Many Americans had the
privilege to be part of this period, a period known as The Roaring
Twenties.
How to Cite this Page
MLA Citation:
"The Roaring Twenties." 123HelpMe.com. 13 Mar 2011
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مُساهمةموضوع: رد: the Roaring Twenties.   2011-08-12, 16:46

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مُساهمةموضوع: رد: the Roaring Twenties.   2011-08-13, 07:40

thanku 4 ur sweety word
blassed
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مُساهمةموضوع: رد: the Roaring Twenties.   2011-08-14, 19:54

بارك الله فيييييييييييييك
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the Roaring Twenties.
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