The First World War was a war that represented the cultural changes that would take place directly following it. It was a war of new weaponry and new ways of communication. However, much like the new era of culture in the 1920’s, it came to a standstill; stuck in the trenches of some far off land.
After the sons, brothers, and husbands had left the country to serve, the daughters, sisters, and wives were given the task of supporting them. They made weapons and sent letters. My grandmother was one of these women. Born in 1899, she sent countless letters of support and affection to the soldiers, and helped her mother around the house when she was away in the factories. But after the war, women were given a backseat once again. The jobs that existed to make war materials had vanished, and the men that wanted work after the war had arrived. Forcing women like my grandmother and her mother out of work and leaving their husbands and brothers jobless throughout the next decade.
African-Americans and immigrants to the United States were still second-class citizens in most of the country. They were able to make a living through accepting low wages. This strategy worked until the white, American boys came back from the war. Immigrants were treated very poorly in the little work they were able to find, and African-Americans (unable to fight in the war for the most part) had trouble fighting racism in their own country.
The culture of the 1920’s changed drastically. Night clubs, music, and art scenes popped up in cities and suburban areas. This, with the returning soldiers, created a chaotic change in the meaning of culture. Coming from a “refined” sense, this change swung to the conclusion that culture was an eclectic and ever-changing thing. Something that a group possessed was its culture. Almost like a style or a way that a group behaves and expresses. Moral behavior took a backseat in the 1920’s. Open talk about sex trickled between both men and women. This act...
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