American Society in the 1920s

Flashcards by sagar.joban, updated more than 1 year ago
Created by sagar.joban over 7 years ago


GCSE USA Flashcards on American Society in the 1920s, created by sagar.joban on 03/27/2013.

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Entertainment 1,000,000s went to the cinema each week. Stars such as Rudolph Valentino, Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton. Hollywood became the centre of a multi-million $ industry. Jazz was the new craze - USA became the centre of world entertainment.
Women Women given the vote after WW1. Gained more freedom - working and earning own salaries. 1929 - 10 million Americans had jobs. Shown by 'flappers' - wore short skirts, smoked and had no chaperones. However, still did housework, paid less, not many high up in politics, and traditional towns disapproved of these 'flappers'.
Intolerance The communist revolution in Russia scared Americans, especially industrialists - known as the 'Red Scare'. Thought that trade unions would cause a revolution. Targeted radicals in the immigrant communities - police, soldiers and ex-servicemen raided offices and meeting, arresting 1000s. Supported by Government. Sacco and Vanzetti Case was most extreme.
Immigration After WW1, USA tried to slow down immigration with the 1921 Immigration Act. By 1929, immigrants entering USA went from 850,000 to 150,000. The 1924 Amendment to the Immigration Act meant that more immigrants came from Britain, Ireland and Germany rather than eastern Europe or Italy.
Ku Klux Klan (KKK) Originally formed to terrorise the African-Americans slaves after their freedom in the 19th Century. But also attacked Catholics and Jews. Movement of mainly poor whites concerned about their lives in 1920s US showing how the 'boom' period wasn't great for everyone.
Prohibition End of WW1 - strong resistance to alcohol. Temperance groups forced government to pass 18th Amendment to Congress (Volstead Act), prohibiting the sale and manufacture of alcohol in 1919. Massive failure - bootleggers smuggled alcohol into USA or brewed 'moonshine'. Secret bars called 'speakeasies'.
Crime Law enforcement of the prohibition was ineffective. Not enough agents and officers and were poorly paid. They were often bribed or intimidated by gangs - the most famous was the one run by Al Capone. Ruled most of Chicago and was responsible for the Valentine's Day Massacre in 1929 - 6 rivals killed. Gangs began to run businesses - gang fights for control.
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