Chapter 20: The Politics of the Roaring Twenties ‘The Business of America’
Content Objective: Explain the importance of consumerism and economic impact of the Second Industrial Revolution of the 1920s. Background: The 1920s ushered in more lasting changes to the American social scene than any previous decade. The United States had proven itself as a global power in acquiring an empire and intervening in the First World War, yet lacked the physical destruction of the conflict that plagued the European continent. The standard of living was rising faster than anywhere in the world. The 1920s saw the culmination of fifty years of rapid American industrialization. New products burst from American production lines with the potential of revolutionizing American life. Many consumer products were now available to a majority of Americans. The standard of living increased as the economy grew stronger. The 1920’s is sometimes referred to as the Second Industrial Revolution; manufacturers kept introducing more and more useful and enticing products, while at the same time, credit became more available to more Americans. Research: You will create a Google “Drawing” that shows how one of the following 1920s products influenced the American economy and mass consumer culture. For each product include: What companies were producing product? How and where was the product made? How was the product advertised? (radio, newspapers, posters, etc.) o Who did the ads target? What methods did they use to get consumers to buy? o How did this product impact American culture? How did this product impact American economy? o Data on sales/profits, if available. BONUS: What other industries might have been created because of the product?