The Modern Era of the 1920's - Mrs. French's Website
+ The Modern Era of the 1920s The United States During the Jazz Age + Themes of the Roaring Twenties Social Political Economic Fundamentalism vs. Modernity Advent of Mass Culture Isolationism Limited Government Consumerism Unrestricted and Uncontrolled Expansion + Essential Questions
The 1920s were a period of new and changing attitudes on the one hand and traditional values and nostalgia on the other. What led to this tension between old and new AND in what ways was the tension manifested? To what extent was American foreign policy during the 1920s a continuation of past policy and to what extent was it a departure? + Politics: Republican Control Business Doctrine Calvin Coolidge: The business of America is business Weakening of Regulatory Agencies Business friendly administrations and Congress
Sympathetic courts + The Harding Administration A Return to Normalcy The Ohio Gang A Few Good Choices Hughes (Sec. State), Hoover (Commerce), Mellon (Treasury), Taft (SCOTUS) Domestic Policy Reduced Income Tax Increased Tariff (Fordney-McCumber, 1922) Bureau of the Budget
Pardoned Debs + The Downfall A Few Bad Choices Albert B. Fall (Interior), Harry Daugherty (Attorney General) Scandals Bribery (Daugherty) Teapot Dome (Fall) Death (August, 1923) + The Presidency of Calvin Coolidge
Silent Cal The Election of 1924 Coolidge (R) vs. Davis (D) vs. LaFollette (Progressive) Vetoes and Inaction Cut spending Vetoes: Bonuses for WWI Vets McNary-Haugen (1928) (farm subsidies) + The Election of 1928
Herbert Hoover (R) Administrative roles under three previous presidents Alfred E. Smith (D, NY) Catholic, wet Hoovers Quote Upon Receiving the Republican Nomination (August 11, 1928): We We in in America America today today are are nearer nearer to to the the final final triumph triumph over
over poverty poverty than than ever ever before before in in the the history history of of any any land... land... We We have have not not yet yet reached reached the the goal, goal, but but given given aa chance chance to to go go forward forward with with the the policies
policies of of the the last eight years, and we shall soon with the help of last eight years, and we shall soon with the help of God God be be in in sight sight of of the the day day when when poverty poverty will will be be banished
banished from from this this nation. nation. Economics of the + Roaring Twenties Effects of Government Policy and the Birth of a Consumer Culture + Economic Development Characteristics: Immediate Post-War Recession (1921) Lengthy Business Prosperity (19221928) High Standard of Living
Low Unemployment (less than 4%) Increased wages for middle and working classes Although prosperity did not extend to farmers and the working poor Economic Disaster (1929) + Causes of Business Prosperity Increased Productivity Efficiency (Taylor) Mass Production & Assembly Line (Ford, 1914) Energy Technologies Petroleum Oil = 23% of energy Electricity (300% increase in use) Motors in factories, appliances in homes Government Policy Corporate tax cuts, subsidies, and lax enforcement of antitrust laws Tax cuts for the wealthy (Trickle-down
Mellon) Federal Reserve Policies + A Consumer Economy New Appliances Refrigerators, vacuums, washing machines The Automobile Industrial and Cultural Revolution Increasing Sales Advertising Buying on Credit Installment Plans + Impact of the Automobile
Economic Affected Industries: Gas, Steel, Glass, Rubber, Roads & Travel Replaced railroads Social Independence for Women and Teens Shopping, travel, commuting Cultural Iconic Advent of the Big Three Ford, GM, Chrysler Economic Problems + Farm Problems Post War Problems Massive debt
Although new technology increased production, issues with prices and loans not addressed Labor Problems Declining union membership Result of welfare capitalism and association of unions with socialism Ineffectiveness of strikes United Mine Workers (John L. Lewis) Conservative court injunctions + A New Culture Social and Cultural Developments of the Jazz Age + Causes Consumer Culture Advertising
Mass Consumption New Technology Entertainment Electricity Radio & Automobile Sports & Film Arts and Literature +The Radio (1920) National Syndication NBC (1924)
CBS (1927) Promoted Uniformity and Advertising Hollywood Talkies (Jazz Singer, 1927) Movie Stars Chaplin, Garbo, Valentino Movie Palaces Entertainment
80 million tickets weekly Popular Heroes Sports: Dempsey, Ruth, Thorpe, Jones Aviation: Lindbergh, Earhart + Gender Roles, Family, and Education Women at Home Gender roles reinforced Women in the Labor Force Following war, went back to largely clerical jobs
Receiving lower wages than male counterparts Revolution in Morals Psychology (Freud) Old vs. New New appliances didnt change role of homemaker Music, movies, fashion, smoking, sex Birth Control The Flapper
Marriage and Divorce Rates Education Importance of schooling (high school: 25%) Path toward assimilation for immigrants + The Arts Literature The Lost Generation American expatriates protesting mass culture/cosumerism Poets: T.S. Eliot, e.e. cummings, Ezra Pound
Writers: F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, Sinclair Lewis Examples: The Great Gatsby (Fitzgerald); Babbitt and Main Street (Lewis) Art & Architecture Art Deco Artists: Hopper, Wood, Benton Musical Theater Rhapsody in Blue and Porgy and Bess (Gershwin)
The Harlem Renaissance +Migration of Jazz South (New Orleans) Up the River (St. Louis & Chicago) To the City (New York) Poets and Musicians Countee Cullen, Claude McKay, Langston Hughes, Zora Neale Hurston Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, Bessie Smith, Billie Holiday United Negro Improvement Association (1916)
Marcus Garveys Back to Africa Movement + Values in Conflict Religion Modernism vs. Fundamentalism Manifestations: Revivalists Billy Sunday, Aimee Semple McPherson The Scopes Monkey Trial (Dayton, TN - 1925) Evolution on Trial Clarence Darrow vs. WJB
+ Views of the Scopes Trial 18th Amendment (1919) + Volstead Act Defying the Law Prohibition Bootleggers and Speakeasies Organized Crime - Al Capone
Alcohol Consumption actually increased in cities during Prohibition Political Discord and Repeal Noble Experiment created more problems than it solved Decline in overall alcoholism and alcohol-related deaths Increased criminal activity and other vices: prostitution, gambling, narcotics 21st Amendment (1933) + Government Policies
Emergency Quota Act (1921) 2% of 1890 National Origins Act Sacco and Vanzetti (1921) 3% of 1910 Census 1924 Immigration Act Nativism Sentenced to death
Rebirth of the KKK Birth of a Nation (D.W. Griffith, 1915) Over 5 million members by 1925 Tactics: Targeted Un-Americans Violence and threats Political influence Decline:
Fraud, corruption, and vice American Foreign + Policy The Fiction of Isolation and the Emergence of a World Power Disarmament and Peace + Washington Conference (1921) Five-Power Treaty 5:5:3:1.67:1.67 Four-Power Treaty US, France, Great Britain, and Japan Nine-Power Treaty Respect Open Door Policy in China
Kellogg-Briand Pact (1928) Renounced use of force to achieve national ends Ineffective: permitted defensive wars and failed to provide enforcement + Business and Diplomacy Latin America Morrow negotiates for US oil investors in Mexico (1927) Troops sent to Nicaragua and Haiti, pulled from the Dominican Republic (1924) US investments double from 1919-1929 Middle East
Hughes negotiates for oil-drilling rights Tariff Policy 25% (Fordney-McCumber) European nations retaliate with own tariffs War Debts and Reparations Dawes Plan + Legacy of the Roaring Twenties New Technology and advances in the arts & entertainment lead to birth of a mass culture. Xenophobia and disillusionment
with war leads to nativism and isolation. Consumerism and advertising, coupled with lax government regulation leads to economic boom (albeit mainly false growth). + Understanding the 1920s by using the Streets of New York: Entertainment Shopping Advertising Finance
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