• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

In what ways were the 1920s a period of cultural change? How important were the 1920s for the development of music, dance, sport and literature?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

In what ways were the 1920s a period of cultural change? How important were the 1920s for the development of music, dance, sport and literature? Jazz became prominence during the 1920s, a type of music that came directly from African American culture. It reflected one of the most important movements of population in the inter-war period, that of African Americans from the Old South to the North. Other forms of popular music were accompanied by new forms of dance, such as the "Charleston", the "Black Bottom" and the "Turkey Trot". These dances were associated with improvised steps and daring women's fashion - which included women's dresses that were at the knee. In America, the national game was baseball, dominated by the New York Yankees in 1920s, and particular, Babe Ruth who held the professional baseball 'home run' record until Hank Aaron overtook it in 1970. College football was also popular, as well as professional boxing. Mass spectator sports benefited through the rising pay cheques and the development of radio and cinema. The 'lost generation' of writers of the 1920s laid the foundation of modern American literature and provided an important insight into life in America. ...read more.

Middle

Thousands of women were able to find employment as telephonists, typists, secretaries and clerks in the rapidly expanding American economy. Clara Bow, the Hollywood film star, known as the "It Girl", was the individual who symbolised these changes. Women's' cosmetics were the most revealing development. Beauty salons appeared across America, and the cosmetics industry increased its earning from $17 million to $200 million per year. It helped to make Chanel, Helena Rubenstein and Elizabeth Arden household names in the USA> Make-up had previously associated with prostitutes, but now women in America were taking control of their sexuality, through the use of cosmetics, shorter skirts and the removal of corsetry. However, the decade saw the rapid growth of women smokers, but saw the rise in birth control to avoid unwanted pregnancies. However the Age of the Flapper only reflected one aspect of the life and role of women in American society in the 1920s. There were courses in "Wife, Motherhood and the Family as an Economic Unit" at the prestigious women's college, Vassar. For many women, this was a decade of unfulfilled expectation. ...read more.

Conclusion

Although films began with silence, this was considered unimportant, as stars such as Charlie Chaplin were able to provide comedy without the use of language. However, in 1927, through the development of technological advances, Hollywood was able to develop 'talking pictures'. This made films even more popular and the establishment of the Academy Awards (Oscars) in 1928 gave Hollywood an annual showcase to prove its importance in American society and world cinema. What do you regard as the most important cultural development in the 1920s? Give reasons for you answers. I think that all the factors were important in the cultural development in the 1920s. Music, dance, sport and cinemas gave entertainment value to all Americans. Women became more independent and were given the chance to work instead of being seen as 'home and child carers'. And radio and cinema advances gave Americans to look at history, and to provide fashion development. However, I think that the change in women was a significant cultural development in the 1920s. At last, women were given some equal rights, and were given the chance to become independent and work for themselves instead of looking and relying on a husband. All these factors were important in some way as they all relate to each other in different ways. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 essays

  1. How Successful Was the League in The 1920's and 1930's? The League of ...

    * On 24 October 1929, 13 million shares were sold * 28 October and * The disposal of 16 million shares took place on 29 October. This caused many shareholders to be ruined, taking thousands of banks and businesses with it.

  2. How far has the historical, social and cultural development of America shaped the plays ...

    Unemployment rates zoomed upwards, numerous banks failed, the value of most company shares decreased with alarmingly and many companies collapsed. For the next twelve years, until America entered the Second World War, the country was battling against this 'Depression'. The 'American Dream' of ever-increasing prosperity, the freedom to pursue personal

  1. Reasons for the increasing support given to NSDAP by the German people in the ...

    the sight of discipline in a time of chaos, the impression of energy in an atmosphere of universal hopelessness, seems to have won her over also." However the majority of Nazi supporters were from the Mittelstand (lower middle class). The German Mittelstand was comprised of small businessmen, independent artisans, small shopkeepers and the self-employed.

  2. Which of the following problems do you consider to have been the most serious ...

    for all were meant to be what America stood for, and now the growing intolerance threatened this. Now for my second section I will talk about organised crime. Another problem that threatened American society in the 1920s was the ever increasing amount of crime.

  1. Why was there an economic boom in the 1920s?

    America's industrial strength made Americans believe that America was destined to be the most powerful country in the world. Their confidence and ability to do so led to them buying things on credit. This allowed them to have things they couldn't afford, and pay it off at a later date.

  2. How widespread was racism and intolerance in America during the 1920s?

    By 1929, only 150,000 immigrants were allowed in. Northern and Western Europeans took eighty five per cent of the places, and no Asians were allowed in at all. The idea of these quotas was to restrict immigration from eastern Europe, Japan and China, and by 1930, immigration from these areas had all but stopped.

  1. The Hollywood Ten - House Un-American Activities Committee.

    * The Devil Commands (1941) * Secrets of the Lone Wolf (1941) * Sweetheart of the Campus (1941) * Under Age (1941) * Confession of Boston Blackie (1942) * Counter-Espionage (1942) * Seven Miles from Alcatraz (1942) * Behind the Rising Sun (1943) * Captive Wild Woman (1943)

  2. How Strong was Opposition to Continental Commitments in the 1920's

    It was felt that this method would maintain the peace better that the old method which entailed alliances and meant that Britain would not have to commit to France because French security would be guaranteed by the League of Nations.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work