The Impact Of Technology On 1920 — страница 4
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household appliances stimulated the growth of utilities industries like never before. Electricity and plumbing became a standard in American homes. As a result of the massive growth of the consumer goods market, the national economy was greatly strengthened, but a harmful side-effect also resulted. The specialization of labor tasks in factories decreased the need for skilled workers, since workers were only required to do a few tasks many times instead of doing many tasks a few times. Scientific advancements during the 1920s was not confined to only industrial technologies, health and medicine advanced greatly during the same time period. Surprisingly, a post-war interest developed in nutrition, caloric consumption, and physical vitality (Gordon and Gordon 14). This crusade for health was lead primarily by the “Flappers”, liberal and out-going women, of the 1920s. A Flapper was often described as a women who “bobbed her hair, concealed her forehead, flattened her chest, hid her waist, dieted away her hips and kept her legs in plain sight (Noggle 161).” The Flapper’s focus on “dieting away her hips” lead her to increase consumption of vegetables and fruits while decreasing consumption of meats and fats. With the rise in popularity of the Flapper, came a significant change in the dietary habits of Americans as a whole. Coincidentally, the discovery of vitamins and their effects also happened around the same time. Herbert McLean Evans discovered Vitamin E, and its anti-sterility properties in 1920. Elmer V. McCollum discovered Vitamin D, its presence in cod liver, and its ability to prevent rickets, a skeletal disorder, in 1920. Vitamins A, B, C, K, and various subtypes of each were also discovered during the 1920s. Through radio broadcasts, the public learned of the benefits of consuming foods with high nutritional values, and thus a generation of health fanatics was started. However, this was very ironic because cigarette consumption rose to roughly 43 billion annually (Gordon and Gordon 23) and bootleg liquor became a $3.5 billion a year business during the same time period (Gordon and Gordon 68). While pursuing a pure goal of excellent health, the American people failed to realize the harm that cigarettes and liquor had wrought upon them. The prosperity that America experienced during the 1920s seemed like it would last forever. There were virtually no signs of economic depression; wages were at an all time high, the Dow Jones Industrial Stock Index never stopped increasing, everyone indulged in luxuries and entertainment, and there was always a general atmosphere of hope and promise for the future. Life was easy and convenient thanks to the many technological advances that took place during the 1920s. Who would have thought that it would all come to an end on October 24, 1929 and that a decade of despair and depression would follow such an age of happiness and prosperity. Bibliography Cited Works Bruce, Kenneth YOWSAH! YOWSAH! YOWSAH! The Roaring Twenties. Belmont California: Star Publishing Company, 1981. Bunch, Bryan and Alexander Helkmans The Time Tables of Technology. New York: Simon & Schuster, Inc., 1993. Gordon, Lois, and Alan Gordon American Chronicle. Tennessee: Kingsport Press, Inc., 1987. Noggle, Burl Into the Twenties. Urbana Chicago Illinois: University of Illinois Press, 1974. Sloat, Warren 1929 America Before the Crash. New York: Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc., 1979. Stevenson, Elizabeth The American 1920s. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1962.