The Rise of Fast Food- the Most Influential Development in American History After World War II, the building of roads and the explosion of the automobile industry gave birth to an idea that changed America forever- fast food. Fast food came in the 1940’s, conquered throughout the late 20th century, and is now considered the most important development in American history. Fast food changed America by having a colossal impact on the U.S. economy, influencing American culture, particularly in the dynamics of family life, changing the way businesses market to customers, helping America become a worldwide entity, and ultimately changing the way Americans eat. Eric Schlosser’s Fast Food Nation educates the reader on how fast food has impacted America and the world.
Fast food as an industry has benefited the U.S. by stimulating its economy- with benefits and consequences. In the introduction Schlosser mentions, “Americans now spend more money on fast food than on higher education, personal computers, computer software, or new cars” (Schlosser, pg. 3). Fast food has come far from where it was after World War II, when the largest industries were the automobile, education, aerospace, and farming industries.
Since 1940, fast food has created more than 3 million jobs for Americans and transformed small towns into bustling cities. Schlosser references to Anaheim, CA and how it has transformed since the 1940’s. Before fast food, Anaheim was devoted to thousands of acres of oranges as its main staple, but now not one acre is devoted to growing oranges, and the once citrus scented air is now full of smog. The arrival of fast food coupled with the growing number of automobiles turned the once small Anaheim into a huge city. Schlosser also relates Colorado Springs, CO to the same set of
circumstances, as its population has exploded since the arrival of fast food and other industries. From these examples it is evident that fast food has become an industry that can transform...
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