The decade and life of an American before the 1920’s was built on stead fast “rural-based values” and “individualism”, but when Henry Ford revolutionized the automobile industry with mass production; that started the beginning of a consumer good revolution (1). More and more Americans were buying various consumer goods to make their life a little easier. It gave them more time for leisure. What weren’t foreseen were the major issues that came with urbanization and great distance between the lower income and middle to high income families.
The biggest factor to this change in American lifestyle was the automobile industry. With the creation and modernization of mass production, the automobile was becoming very affordable to people who could not afford something of that luxury before. This process also allowed the standardization of the cars so that the farmer in Kansas bought the same kind of car as the factory worker in Pennsylvania (1). In return, developers of the city and suburbia had to take notice of that. “Filling stations appeared on main streets, replacing the smithies and stables of the past (1)”. Shopping centers were created (1). With this entire boom in the industry, there had to be a downfall at some point, which is a theme of the 1920’s. A couple of years after cars and their luxury were becoming the norm, the industry became saturated as American people were looking for something different and better than what they all ready have (1).
Not only did the economy get a boost, but employment as well. Urban areas thrived with available jobs. The industrial labor force remained remarkably steady during this period of economic growth (1). American farmers however did not fare so well. Since the city became the focal point and World War I ended, farmers no longer had to produce and feed two countries (1). The demand and price for their exports went down (1). Lower class citizens didn’t have it any easier as well. All of the profits...
References: 1. Divine, Robert A., T.H. Breen, George M. Fredrickson, R. Hal Williams, Ariel J. Gross, H.W. Brands. 2007. America Pearson Education, Inc.: Past and Present, 725.
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