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Chapter 28 Wrap Up

Chapter 28 Wrap Up - Chapter 28 Wrap Up I Prosperity a...

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Chapter 28 Wrap Up I. Prosperity a. Remember America was prosperous because it had a monopoly on industry i. because it emerged unscathed from WWII and massive military spending ii. gave people jobs and had pent up consumer demand b. Auto industry erupts i. Cars are really a sign of conspicuous consumption as they get bigger and bigger – tail fins and such looked prosperous ii. Federal Hwy Act of 1956 is also important here because the nation is easier to travel and the tourist industry and national parks gain a lot more visitors 1. original intent of act was national security c. TV radically changes American culture i. TV becomes the “hearth” of the family ii. In 1950 3.2 million owned TVs 1. in 1955 32 million owned them iii. Radio programs go down drastically, thousands of movie theaters close, even magazines and reading decline as people spent their time in front of the TV iv. By 1960 it is essential in presidential elections, candidates need to pull off looking good in front of the cameras and debate well more than ever v. The most popular TV show in the 1950s was I Love Lucy , which steered clear away from politics vi. TV Westerns were very popular at this time 1. with Gene Autry and his horse Trigger, Roy Rogers, and the re- runs of Hopalong Cassidy among others 2. The DUKE reigned in the movie theaters, but TV Westerns were very important, comprising a great deal of the programming during the decade 3. The cowboy began to epitomize American ingenuity, individualism, and it bred patriotic goals and values in American boys in particular – the roles for women were not really there 4. fighting Indians and outlaws was synonymous with fighting “reds” or communists in many ways d. New products geared especially toward women i. Washing machines, the women is the steward of the home, her job is to hang out and take care of children and make sure they are consuming ii. The importance of household appliances goes all the way to a debate “the kitchen debate” between Richard Nixon and Nikita Khrushchev 1. where they battled about the merits of American ingenuity and choices of consumer goods in 1959 iii. Barbie 1. born in 1958, she came cheap at 3 bucks but her wardrobe cost over 100 bucks and she had an insatiable appetite for fashion and accessories
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e. Fast food makes its debut i. McDonald’s in particular is one of the first fast food joints that ties in the love affair with cars with fast food ii. Shows that Americans are “on the go” and have things to do, like shuttling kids around and stuff f. Suburbs i. What could be more consumer driven than housing - Levittown –new housing most pressing need – suburbs grow six times faster than cities 1. by 1970 more Americans live in the suburbs than the cities ii. William Levitt 1. the New York developer led this revolution, used prefabrication techniques and the new balloon framing to build many houses and quickly 2. This method is highly successful and important in providing cheap housing for returning GI’s and families just starting out a.
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Chapter 28 Wrap Up - Chapter 28 Wrap Up I Prosperity a...

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