America in the 1930s

Overview

Listening to radio shows like The Lone Ranger, watching King Kong and the Marx Brothers at the movies, and dancing to swing music.

But the 1930s were also years of fear and struggle. The United States was in the Great Depression, with banks and businesses shut down and millions of people unemployed. The government launched a program called the New Deal to try to jump-start the economy. The program helped farmers and factory workers. It put people to work on construction jobs and...

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Overview

Listening to radio shows like The Lone Ranger, watching King Kong and the Marx Brothers at the movies, and dancing to swing music.

But the 1930s were also years of fear and struggle. The United States was in the Great Depression, with banks and businesses shut down and millions of people unemployed. The government launched a program called the New Deal to try to jump-start the economy. The program helped farmers and factory workers. It put people to work on construction jobs and even art projects. But Americans still had reason to worry, especially as tensions in Europe and Asia boiled over into World War II at the end of the 1930s.

The decade's prominent personalities included President Franklin D. Roosevelt, aviator Amelia Earhart, boxer Joe Louis, and novelist John Steinbeck. They helped lead Americans through a decade of hunger, hard work, and hope. Read about this fascinating decade-its ups, downs, and ordeals-from start to finish.

Looks at the decade that brought Americans Franklin Delano Roosevelt and his New Deal, the Lindbergh kidnapping, John L. Lewis, miniature golf, and feature-length Disney animated films.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Elizabeth D. Schafer
This comprehensive volume of "The Decades of Twentieth-Century America" series examines dire economic situations and cultural responses to the Depression, emphasizing New Deal legislation which eased financial stresses by creating jobs and enacting policies to assist Americans. Quotations provide readers with access to contemporary voices, especially insightful due to comparisons of the current recession with 1930s conditions. Archival illustrations, a bibliography, a timeline, a list of citations, a hands-on activity, and lists of 1930s movies and books complement the text. A chart provides modern values of 1930s incomes and merchandise to assist readers in comprehending the economic burdens people faced during that decade. Although dance, entertainment, and crimes are addressed, this book omits any mention of how many Americans sought prize money by participating in talent competitions and dance marathons or the abuses they often suffered. The text does not elaborate about the Depression's impact on children and education. Discussion of 1930s children's literature is limited to Nancy Drew mysteries and Laura Ingalls Wilder's books, not mentioning that decade's Newbery Medal books, including Elizabeth Enright's Thimble Summer (1938) set during the 1930s. Read with Aileen Kilgore Henderson's Hard Times for Jake Smith (2004), which realistically depicts children's Depression-era experiences and includes comments regarding the author's 1930s memories. Supplement with Kriste Lindenmeyer's The Greatest Generation Grows Up: American Childhood in the 1930s (2005) and Rebecca L. Berg's The Great Depression in Literature for Youth (2004). Reviewer: ElizabethD. Schafer
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780761328322
  • Publisher: Lerner Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 9/1/2009
  • Series: The Decades of Twentieth-Century America Series
  • Format: Library Binding
  • Pages: 144
  • Age range: 13 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.10 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Edmund Lindop has written many books for young adults, including several books in The Decades of Twentieth-Century America series.

Margaret J. Goldstein was born in Detroit and graduated from the University of Michigan. She is an editor and author for young readers. She lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

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Table of Contents

Prologue: Crash 5

Chapter 1 Hard Hit: The Great Depression 13

Chapter 2 A New Deal: Government Fights the Great Depression 29

Chapter 3 Banners and Bandwagons: Popular Movements of the 1930s 39

Chapter 4 The world of Tomorrow: Technology in the 1930s 49

Chapter 5 Sidelined: Social Divisions in the 1930s 59

Chapter 6 The printed Page: Literature of the 1930s 71

Chapter 7 Streamlined: Art and Design of the 1930s 79

Chapter 8 Stage Door: Dramatic Arts of the 1930s 91

Chapter 9 Life is just a bowl of Cherries: Music of the 1930s 107

Chapter 10 "Take Me Out To The Ball Game": Sports of the 1930s 115

Epilogue: Gone With The Wind 125

Timeline 130

Source Notes 132

Selected Bibliography 134

To Learn More 136

Selected 1930s Classics 138

1930s Activity 139

Index 140

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