The New Era

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					The New
Era

1914 – 1929
Introduction
• Affluent
  conservativsm vs.
  dramatic social,
  economic, &
  political change

• Modernizing
  currents but also
  intense cultural
  conflicts
The Great White Way – Times Square by Howard Thain
The New Economy
• U.S. began a long
  period of almost
  uninterrupted
  prosperity &
  economic
  expansion
Economic Growth and
Organization
• Technology & industrial
  expansion

• Assembly line & auto
  industry

• Radio (1920)

• Movies (sound in 1927)

• Aviation

• Electronics
Workers in an Age of
Capital
• Continuing
  maldistribution of
  wealth & purchasing
  power

• Successes & failures

• Most workers saw
  standard of living rise

• “Welfare capitalism”
Workers in an Age of
Capital, cont.
• At the end of the decade, annual
  income between $1500 - $1800

• Bleak time for labor organization

• Strength of corporations

• “Open shop”
Women and Minorities in
the Work Force
• “Pink-collar” jobs

• Low-paying service
  occupations

• Secretaries

• Salesclerks

• Phone operators

• Few opportunities for
  union representation
Women and Minorities in
the Work Force, cont.
• African Americans &
  the Great Migration

• A. Philip Randolph’s
  Brotherhood of
  Sleeping Car Porters

• Dishwashers,
  garbage collectors,
  domestics

• West & Southwest
The Plight of the Farmer
• Agriculture
  embracing new
  technologies

• Substantial
  surpluses led to
  decline in food
  prices
The New Culture
• Increasingly urban
  & consumer-
  oriented culture

• New set of values
  reflecting
  prosperity &
  complexity

• Increasing
  diversity of U.S.
Consumerism and
Communications
• Electric refrigerators

• Washing machines

• Wristwatches

• Cigarettes

• Cosmetics

• Mass-produced fashions

• Cars
Consumerism and
Communications, cont.
• Advertising industry
• Identifying products
  w/a particular lifestyle
• Newspapers
• Mass-circulation
  magazines
• Ladies’ Home
  Journal; Time;
  Reader’s Digest
• NBC
Women in the New Era
• Professional opportunities remained
  limited
• “Feminine” fields
• Nursing, fashion, social work,
  teaching
• Middle-class women remained
  largely in the home
• Sanger & birth control mvmt.
• “Flapper”
Sheik with Sheba
Nativism and the Klan
• Increasing sentiment on behalf of
  restricting immigration

• Immigration Act of 1921 – quota of
  3% of 1910 population

• National Origins Act of 1924 –
  reduced European quota to 2% of
  1890 population
Nativism and the Klan,
cont.
• Rebirth of KKK

• Stone Mtn.

• Systematic terror
  against blacks,
  Jews, Catholics,
  foreigners
Religious Fundamentalism
• Debate over place
  of religion in
  contemporary
  society
• Fundamentalists
• Opposition to
  Darwin
• Scopes trial in TN
  (1925)
• Darrow v. Bryan
The Democrats’ Ordeal
• Tensions &
  divisions w/in
  Democratic Party

• Diverse
  constituency
Republican Government
• Active agent of
  economic change

• Starting in 1921,
  12 yrs. of
  Republican
  governance
Harding and Coolidge
• Harding (1920)
  began delegating
  much of his
  authority to others

• Teapot Dome
  Scandal (WY) &
  Albert Fall
Harding and Coolidge, cont.
• Coolidge (1923)
  and a passive
  approach to public
  office
Government and Business
• Govt. working effectively to help
  business & industry operate
  w/maximum efficiency & productivity

• Strong partnership of WWI

• Hoover in 1928

• Progressive critics
The Disenchanted
• Many artists &
  intellectuals
  experienced a
  disenchantment
  w/modern Am.
• Social & personal
  alienation
• Fitzgerald
• Sinclair Lewis
• H.L. Mencken
The Disenchanted, cont.




•   Harlem Renaissance
•   Black intellectuals & artists
•   Cultural & political challenge to racial injustice
•   Racial pride, courage, & consciousness
•   Langston Hughes, Claude McKay, Zora Neale
    Hurston
The Jazz Singers by Archibald Motley

				
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