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The Roaring Twenties: Life in Post-war America

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The Roaring Twenties: Life in Post-war America "The 1920s was a time of wild enjoyment when everyone was having a good time". Use all the sources and your own knowledge to explain whether you agree with this view. America in the 1920s is often described as "The Age of Excess", a time of pleasure, where everybody benefited from the economic boom. New inventions such as the radio, refrigerators, and most importantly the mass-produced motor car changed American lifestyle completely, and made the American economy the strongest in the world. It is not all as it seems; not everybody benefited from the boom and huge racial problems and conflict divided America. In this essay I will highlight the problems faced by many Americans and how many people did really benefit from the growing prosperity of the 1920s. ...read more.


However, the prosperity was not equally divided. 6million families, 42% of the total had an income of under $100 a year and certainly couldn't afford the new inventions. Source D is a cartoon commenting on the situation faced by farmers, who were among the least well off. It shows the factories pumping out huge amounts of money whereas the farmer is having to sell his farm due to the intense amount of competition from other countries. Due to the policy of "rugged individualism" advocated by Presidents Coolidge and Hoover, the poor people were unable to receive any support from the government. Black Americans were also among the people who didn't benefit from the boom. Racial conflict created a rift between black and white Americans, specialty in the southern states. Many factories also operated an all-white policy which meant it was hard for black people to jobs. ...read more.


In 1920 40million cinema seats were sold per week, and in 1929 the figure increased to 100million. Source E shows crowds lining up for cinema tickets in Chicago. I conclusion, to say that everybody was having a good time in the 1920s is far too simplistic. The prosperity of the American economy was not divided among everybody. Farmers and Black Americans clearly suffered from the economic boom and racial discrimination created a rift predominantly between black and white Americans. Source B is an example of the sick sense of humour and activities engaged by the KKK. However saying that the 1920s was not a good time for everybody is also a mistake, because a large majority of the population did benefit. The statement must be balanced out considering all points of views, rather than a one-sided opinion in order to be true. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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