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The idea of progress : How far were the Roaring Twenties a Golden Age for the USA ?

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Par   •  30 Mars 2020  •  Cours  •  1 037 Mots (5 Pages)  •  54 Vues

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The idea of progress :

        

        I'm going to present the notion « idea of progress ». First of all, let me give you a definition of this notion. This notion is a change that allows the well-being of each individual and the evolution of society and the modernization of differents sectors, like medcine, technology, or science. To illustrate this notion, I have chosen to talk about the roaring twenties. Therefore, we can raise the following question : « How far were the Roaring Twenties a Golden Age for the USA ? »

First, we are going to see a decade of progress at the economic level, then we will see the thriving culture of the Twenties, and finally, we are going to see the flipside of the coin.

        First, we can see the decade of progress with the document on the economic boom. This document shows us the economic situation of the united states after the Worl War One, when the USA start to become stronger than Europe. There is an evolution of shopping habits, people are encouraged to consume, with the development of  advertisement, catalogues and chain stores, so, it's a consumer society. There is also technological innovations, like electricity in every house and every factory or the development of the car industry. This economic boom has an impact on people's daily life, they have an easier daily life because there is creation of jobs, the price of products decreases.

The document of the revolution of the automobile shows us the progress too. The cars in the twenties in USA allow the creation of jobs, the construction of roads, of hotels, or restaurants. There is also car goods, the development of the industries of oil or steel for exemple.

Finaly, we can see the progress with the video on the builders of skyscrapers. Indeed, Skyscrapers represent the novelty, the innovation. Their construction shows us progress in working techniques, and reveals American economic domination. In addition, there is more jobs for non graduated people. But  many workers die at work, it is a dangerous job without security.

        Secondly, we can see the thriving culture with the begining of dance for exemple. The new musics and dances were fast paced and energetic, like the optimistic twenties themselves. They were an escape from the horror of war, and an opportunity to release pent up emotions created by the restricted lifestyles forced on the public by the war effort. People saw the new dances in Hollywood movies and practiced them to music from phonograph records. There is also the begining of music, cinema, litterature or sport for exemple.

The extract of the « Great Gatsby » reveals the thriving culture of the 1920’s with different symbols: you can see jazz instruments as a reference to famous musicians such as Duke Ellington or Louis Armstrong. The film stars who are invited is an indirect reference to the emergence of the cinema industry with the birth of new studios… Women’s clothes also show the new fashion style of the time, so, the bobbed hair, the heavy makeup, the dropped waistline dresses which symbolize a form of rebellion for women. The fact that they are smocking also reveals this desire for more freedom and equality with men.

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