Boom, Bust & Recovery 1917-1954

               Buy Here

          Democracies in change: Britain 

                                  and

The United States in the Twentieth Century

 

 

                   Buy Here

              Democracies in change: Britain

                                  and

The United States in the Twentieth Century

 

 

The Exam

 

20% of final mark

 

Written examination, lasting 1 hour 30 minutes

Students will answer 2 questions: one from section A, one from section B

Sections A comprises one compulsory question for the option studied, based on two sources. It assesses source analysis skills (AO2)

Section B comprises a choice of essays that assess understanding of the period in depth (AO1)

 

Exemplar - Paper 2 Section B Essays and Feedback from Edexcel

 

The Specification

 

In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, steam power and new technology had made Britain the workshop of the world: electrical power and the assembly line did the same for American industry in the early twentieth century. An age of mass production was ushered in, most typically seen in Detroit, where Henry Ford’s automobiles were the force driving industrial production. A devastated Europe had to redevelop its industrial base, but the USA filled the gap and dominated world trade in the 1920s.

 

This economic boom was built on shaky foundations, especially in the banking system, and the collapse of several banks, along with the Wall Street Crash of 1929, led America into a major depression. Despite Roosevelt’s best efforts through his New Deal, features of the depression lasted throughout the 1930s and were only effectively ended with America’s entry into the Second World War in 1941.

 

The USA’s mainland was not affected by the war, and, just as in the 1920s, the post-war years saw sustained economic growth. A massive highway construction programme led to the growth of the suburbs and the Levittown projects, and to a consumer society centred on the automobile, television and the shopping mall.

 

After the civil war of 1861–65 the rights of black Americans were enshrined in the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments, but these were hedged round with so many qualifications, that America developed into a bitterly segregated society. The 1920s saw the racist Ku Klux Klan at the height of its influence and power, and discrimination against all minorities was a feature of this whole period. Black Americans were excluded from the benefits of the boom, though their economic position improved somewhat under the New Deal. In the decade after 1945 there was slow but discernible change for black Americans, thanks to the legal work of the NAACP and the political contribution made by President Truman. By 1955, the growing numbers of civil rights groups were well prepared to campaign for equal status for all Americans, whatever their colour.

 

Cultural change is a theme which runs through this whole option. The 1920s saw an astonishing explosion of black culture, the Harlem Renaissance, which included notable writers, poets and intellectuals. The music scene was transformed by artists such as Louis Armstrong, Count Basie and Bessie Smith, the ‘Empress of the Blues’. The New Deal’s Works Progress Administration encouraged the work of many writers and musicians. The cinema grew in popularity, especially during the war and through the popularity of Disney cartoons. Perhaps the most dramatic changes of all came after 1945, with the growth of national television networks and, from the early 1950s, with the creation of a separate teenage culture inspired by rock’n’roll.

 

Students will be expected to undertake extensive wider reading outside of the classroom. The Edexcel text is the approved core reading material for this course but additional texts may appeal to the preferred learning style of individual students. I have inspection copies of all the recommended books. Extension reading materials are to be found at the bottom of this page.

 

Additionally this site contains links to video resources which have organised to link to specific booklets. Students wishing to succeed will be expected to use these in their studies.

 

Comprehensive audio Mp3 files are also available for students covering the core lectures of this course as well as resources available from I Tunes University giving students access to materials from some of the worlds leading academic institutions

 

Avaliable from my TES Shop

 

Suitable for either an overview or revision purposes:

 

A more basic overview/revision based upon James West Davidsons book: A Little History of the United States 

 

'A Little History of America' James West Davidson - Chapter 31 - The Masses - Supporting Worksheet 

'A Little History of America' James West Davidson - Chapter 32 - The New Deal - Supporting Worksheet 

'A Little History of America' James West Davidson - Chapter 31 - Superpower - Supporting Worksheet 

 

A more developed and rigourous overview/revision based upon David Reynolds book: Empire of Liberty

 

'Empire of LIberty' David Reynolds - Chapter 11 - War and Peace - Supporting Worksheet

'Empire of LIberty' David Reynolds - Chapter 12 - From Boom to Bomb- Supporting Worksheet

'Empire of Liberty' David Reynolds - Chapter 13 - Red or Dead - Supporting Worksheet

 

              Buy Here

  A Little History of the United States  

            James West Davidson

                  Buy Here

                      Empire of Liberty

                      David Reynolds

 

 

 

Booklet One

 

Lessons

 

Lesson - Welcome: A Course Introduction, Expectations and Landmark Assessment (see below)

 

Activity - 'The Years of Expansion' - Reading Article. Students to read the article provided and compleet the worksheet studying the America that emerged towars the end of the Nineteenth Century and gathered pace at the start of the Twentieth Century. The USA experienced its own Industrial Revolution and subsequent rapid urbanisation, sucking in unregulated numbers of immigrants that rapidly changed the dynamic and cultural make up of the USA. This would be the context for the cultural Rebellion and subsequent Reaction of the WASP elite as America teetered on the brink of entry to WWI and a role on the international stage she had thus ignored in two hundred years of self-imposed isolation.

 

Lesson - The Century - Americas Time: Seeds of Change* - Video - Please complete the worksheet provided - How did the 20th century change the ways Americans live? This program examines the early 1900s – when William McKinley was President, a loaf of bread cost only a few cents, horsepower really meant horsepower, flying to the moon was the stuff of dreams, and the average life span was only 45 years – while looking ahead to the decades of changes yet to come.

 

Lesson - The American People - Students will study the nature and demographics of the American Melting Pot as well as the changing patterns of unchecked immigration, initially from WASP Northern Europe to the influx from Southern and Eastern Europe prior to WWI. Students will be introduced to the concepts of REACTION and REBELLION to analyse the response to change in the USA and diviisons and fault lines running the American society.

 

Video - 'The Great American Melting Pot'

 

Lesson  - The US Constitution / Political System  How did the USA cull the best elements of existing constitutions to create its own constitution that has endured for almost two hundred and fifty years. Students will study the role and responsibilties of each of the three branches of government and how 'checks and balances' ensure that no one branch exercises too much power or influence. In studying the role of the President students will have the context for how FDR redefined the office after he came to power in 1932 and how the Supreme Courts role interpretaion of the Constitution was moulded by the Republican Ascendancy of the 1920's and how this conservative stance would be challenged by FDR in the 1930's.

 

Video - 'I'm just a Bill'

Video - Electing a President in Plain English

 

LessonThe USA and WW1 - Students will work through the first of their Key Lectures and then complete  a lesson based actvity studying the causes of American intervention in World War One and the subsequent consequences.

 

Activity - The American People and the War - Reading Article

 

Lesson - World War One - class based activity to support and consoldiate earlier learning on the cuases and consequences of US entry into WWI

 

Actvity - The Century: America Time - Shellshock* - Video - Please complete the worksheet provided - The psychological damage inflicted by the stupifying bombardments of World War I was called shell shock, a term that aptly described the feeling of the post-war world. This program illustrates America’s reluctant emergence as a world power and analyses the impact of the wholesale sense of loss – of life, of husbands and fathers, and of sacred ideals such as honor, patriotism, and glory – that sprang from "the war to end all wars."

 

Lesson - Knowledge Test and Essay Practice - How will my extended writing style need to change to adapt to the A Level markscheme?

 

Landmark Assessment

 

Students will be directed to the core resources*

 

Students will need to research, plan and present a 40 minute essay:

 

Q. 'How accurate is it to place economics as the priority for American entrance into WW1?'

 

The introduction will require: Context, Argument and Plan

The submitted piece will  be colour coded for PEA(EA)

Hierachy of factors and links between features will be expected

 

Students will be permitted to bring one side of A4 notes into the Landmark Assessment

The Cover sheet is to be completed and stapled to their submission

 

Required Reading prior to the start of Booklet 2

 

Activity - The New Era America in the 1920's - Reading Article and Worksheet

Activity - A Little History of the United States: - Chapter 31 - The Masses - Reading Article and Worksheet

 

Both reading articles are included in Booklet 1 for completion and signing off

 

Additional Essays

 

Essay 1 -  (AS Sec B) – America was a ‘melting pot’ of nationalities, how accurate is this description of the USA from the start of the 20th century? 

Essay 2 - (AS Sec B) – To what extent was the First World War the key factor in Americas return to isolationist methods.

 

 

                      

Booklet Two (Pt1)- Boom and Crash, 1920–29 - Politics of Prosperity

 

The topic covers social, economic and cultural changes during the 1920s. Students need to understand the extent of economic prosperity during the 1920s and the impact this had on both social and cultural change. In studying technological change, they should consider the automobile and its significance.

 

Detailed knowledge of the features of the Jazz Age and the Harlem Renaissance is not required, but students need to understand the extent to which they affected the culture of the 1920s.

 

Students need to be aware of the links between growing prosperity in the 1920s and the development of popular culture such as spectator sports, radio and the cinema.

 

The economic boom of the 1920s: mass production; technological advances and their impact on leisure; the automobile; hire purchase; laissez faire; farmers, black Americans and limits to the boom.

 

Causes of the crash of 1929: the Wall Street Crash; overproduction; land speculation; the bull market; weaknesses of the banking system.

 

Changes in society; immigration and the ‘Red Scare’; the KuKlux Klan; prohibition and organised crime; the changing role of women.

 

Cultural change in the 1920s: the Jazz Age; the Harlem Renaissance; growing popularity of baseball; radio and the cinema; American literature 

 

Lessons

 

Lesson- The Politics of Prosperity - Key Lecture

 

Lesson - The Century - America Time: Boom to Bust - Video -The 1920s ushered in an era of great social change, general prosperity, Prohibition and what historians refer to as "modernity." This episode examines these great cultural changes and their affects on the nation. The 1920s, in stark contrast to the Victorian era, "roared," as bathtub gin flowed and more and more Americans moved to urban areas. But the decade also saw limited prosperity for many, especially farmers, and the unrest and discord between the values of small town America and the rapid pace of science and technology. The optimism of the decade would end in the most severe economic depression in American history. Episode 3 presents some of the major events that shaped the decade including The Scopes Monkey Trial, Prohibition, the rise of leisure pastimes, and the impact of inventions such as the automobile, radio, movies and electricity.

 

Lesson - Henry Ford - The Boom of the 1920's is the consequence of multiple interacting facotors over both the Long and Short term. Ford played a significant role in the evolution of mass production and technological innovation,but how important is he compared with other competing factors like WWI, Republican policies, taxes and tarrifs. Students will study Ford to ascertain their own understanding of the hierachy of factors. As an extention, students may start to consider if the short term cause of the boom were alo the long term causes of the crash

 

Lesson  - What were the reasons for US prosperity - Balloon Debate? - Can students opinions survive the test of competitive debate?

 

Lesson  - The Republican Ascendancy  / Presidential Biographies- Reading activity and biography work on the Party and Presdeints whoose policies shaped the decade beween Wilson and FDR's administrations

 

Lesson  - Did Everyone Benefit from the Boom? - We have alreday ascertained that the America of the 1920's was far more complex than a propserous, WASP, urban boom. Undoubtly, the US experienced great prosperity during the decade, but how evenly was it distributed? Who gained? Who missed out?

 

Lesson - Were there signs of the Boom slowing down? - In our infrmation rich society today, we are bombarded with data allowing us the tantalising belief that somehow one can predict the future from present trends. In the recently globalised world of the 1920's and led by a laissez-faire administartion, the US had neither precedent to fall back on, nor anyhting other than the stock market  to act as. a barometer on the economic helath of the nation. This will prove disturbingly useless in 1929. With hindsight, what signs were apparent that the US economy was not as healthy as many hubristic Americans believed?

 

Booklet Two (Pt2)- Boom and Crash, 1920–29 - Politics of Frustration

 

Lesson- The Politics of Frustration - Key Lecture

 

Lesson  - Immigration - Upon becoming President, how did Harding amend the 'Open Door' of immigration to bring about 'noramlcy'. How did this impact upon the trends of immigration dominated by North-Western WASP Europeans in the fist half of the Nineteenth Century to Eastern European and Aisian immigartion by the second half

 

Lesson  - Sacco & Vanzetti - How did their case reflect the 'Reaction & Rebellion' of the post-WWI years in the USA. Were they on trial and found guilty because of the un-American political beliefs or their non-WASPish ethnicity?

 

Lesson  - KKK - how did an organsiation founded on white supremacy flourish in a period of economic growth and prosperity. If 'Revolutionaries thrive on evil times' how did the KKK rsie to become a dominant force in the 1920's when the USA was booming. Students will study the role of the KKK with the context of 'Reaction and Rebellion' set against the gross inequality of the 1920's boom.

 

Lesson - Prohibition

Lesson - Women

Lesson - Black Americans

Activity  - Culture 1 - growing popularity of baseball; radio and the cinema

Activity  - Culture 2 - The Harlem Renaissance

Activity  - Culture 3 - Literature & The Arts

Activity  - The 1920’s Boom: The Winners and Losers

 

Required Reading- For which students must produce revision notes in their own preferred format

 

 

 

Essays

 

Essay 3 - (AS Sec B ) - The US Economic boom of the 1920s was primarily due to the introduction of mass production. ‘How accurate is this view? 

Essay 4 - AS (Sec B ) -  How accurate is it to say that American culture went through a revolution during the 1920’s?

Essay 5 - AS (B) - How far did the lives of black Americans change in the 1920s?

 

 

Booklet Three - Boom and Crash, 1920–29 - Politics of Frustration

 

Lessons

 

Activity -  Inherit the Wind

Activity  - The Politics of Frustration - Key Lecture

Activity  - Reaction and Rebellion

Activity  - The Red Scare

Activity  - Sacco and Vanzetti

Activity  - The KKK

Activity  - The Politics of Prohibition - Key Lecture

Activity  - Gangsters

Activity  - The Changing Role of Women

Activity  - Immigration

 

Required Reading - For which students must produce revision notes in their own preferred format

 

 

Essays

 

Essay 6 - AS (Sec B) -  How much do agree that without Prohibition Al Capone would not have been so successful? 

Essay 7- AS (B) - ‘The tensions in the 1920’s were fundamentally between rural and urban life.’ How far do you agree with this statement?

Essay 8 - AS (B) - ‘The 1920’s saw a radical change in the role and status of women.’ How far do you agree with this statement?

Essay 9 - AS (B) - How widespread was prosperity in the 1920’s?

Essay 10 - AS (B) - How far were their signs that the US economy was faltering in the second half of the 1920’s?

 

Booklet  Four - Boom and Crash, 1920–29 - The Crash

 

Lessons

 

Activity - The Century - Americas Time: The Home Front

Activity  - The Crash - Key Lecture 

Activity  - What were the causes of The Crash and Depression?

Activity  - The Urban and Rural Depression

Activity  - Who was to Blame?

Activity  - What did Hoover do?

Activity  - The Legacy of the Great Depression  

 

Required Reading - For which students must produce revision notes in their own preferred format

 

 

 

Essays 

 

Essay 11 - AS (B) - How far was President Hoover responsible for the Crash and Depression?

Essay 12 - AS (B) - ‘President `Hoover did little to combat the depression’. How far do you agree?

 

Booklet Five - Depression and New Deal, 1929 – 40

 

The topic covers the years from the beginning of the depression to the end of Roosevelt’s New Deal in 1940. Students need to understand the effects of the depression on different people, including those who benefited from it.

 

The spread of the depression, 1929–32: growth of unemployment; collapse of GDP; effects on workers,

families, farmers and ethnic minorities; ‘gangsterism’.

 

Hoover’s response to the depression, 1929–33: the Smoot-Hawley Tariff; homelessness and the Hoovervilles; theReconstruction Finance Corporation; Emergency Relief andConstruction Act 1932.

 

Roosevelt and the First New Deal, 1933–35: emergency relief; public works; the alphabet agencies; help for farmers; reforming the financial system; opposition to Roosevelt’s policies, including Huey Long and the Supreme Court.

 

The Second New Deal, 1935–38: the Wagner Act 1935; the Social Security Act 1935; the Revenue Act 1935; opposition to the Second New Deal.

 

Lessons

 

Activity - The USA in the 1930’s and FDR’s campaign

Activity  - The New Deal Pt1 - Key Lecture

Activity  - Opposition to the First New Deal

Activity  -The Second New Deal - Key Lecture

Activity  - Opposition to the Second New Deal 

Activity - The New Deal and the Arts

Activity - New Deal or Raw Deal?

Activity - Dr New Deal or Doctor Win the War?

 

 

Essays 

 

Essay 12 - AS (B) - How accurate is it to say that the fist New Deal (1922-35) was a great success?

 

Revision

 

 

Required Reading - For which students must produce revision notes in their own preferred format 

 

 

Essays / Questions

 

Section A - AS Questions

Section B - AS Questions

 

(AS Sec B) –‘America had saturated its markets at the end of the 1920’s which caused the depression’ How accurate is this quote?

(AS Sec B) How accurate is it to say that the banking system in America exacerbated the Depression?

 

Section A - A2 Questions

Section B - A2 Questions

 

Revision

 

 

Required Reading - For which students must produce revision notes in their own preferred format

 

Edexcel GCE History The United States 1917-54: Unit 3 - The Years of Prosperity 1919-29

 

 

 

Booklet / Topic Three - Impact of the New Deal and the Second World War on     the USA to 1945

 

The topic covers the years from the beginning of the depression to the end of Roosevelt’s New Deal in 1940. Students need to understand the effects of the depression on different people, including those who benefited from it.

 

The New Deal and the economy: the impact of New Deal policies on unemployment and national infrastructure;women and the New Deal, including the role of Eleanor Roosevelt; the state of the US economy in 1940.

 

The impact of the New Deal and the war on ethnic minorities:New Deal policies and black Americans; the Indian Reorganisation Act 1934; change for hispanic Americans; the contribution of ethnic minorities to the war effort; the race riots of 1943; the Double V campaign.

 

Social and cultural changes: WPA support for writers and musicians; changes in the role of women, including impact of the Fair Employment Practices Commission on the status of women and black Americans; wartime domestic propaganda;the power of Hollywood, including war films and the rise of Disney; the growing power of radio; popular music.

 

The war and the economy, 1941–45: the collapse of unemployment; women and the war effort; the contribution of young people; growing power of trade unions; migration to urban and industrial centres; the growth of new industries.

 

Lessons

 

Activity - WWII - Key Lecture

Activity - The War Economy

Activity - The Century - Americas Time: The Home Front 

 

 

Essays / Questions

 

Section A - AS Questions

Section B - AS Questions

Section A - A2 Questions

Section B - A2 Questions 

 

Revision

 

Required Reading - For which students must produce revision notes in their own preferred format

 

Edexcel GCE History The United States 1917-54: Unit 3 - The Years of Prosperity 1919-29

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

Booklet / Topic Four - The transformation of the USA, 1945–55

 

The topic covers the effects of the New Deal and of the Second World War on US society. Students should understand the extent to which both the New Deal and US involvement in the war helped to revive the economy.

 

Students should understand the links between the changing economic status of women and young people and cultural changes which took place during the war.

 

Economic transformation: changing employment opportunities; government policies to encourage growth; the provision of mortgages for veterans; growing mobility,including cars and highway construction; the growth of the suburbs; Levittown projects; the new consumer society.

 

The end of post-war euphoria: HUAC, McCarthyism and their impact; anti-communism and the Cold War context; the reality of the nuclear age, including Ethel and Julius Rosenberg.

 

Cultural change: Hollywood and the Cold War; the growing power of television, including popular entertainment and sitcoms, the stereotyping of women and ethnic minorities;the origins of a teenage culture, including rock’n’roll.

 

The changing status of minorities: Truman’s desegregation of the armed forces; extent of integration in professional sports and popular entertainment; the growth of the NAACP; the Brown case 1954; the extent of change by 1955. 

 

Lessons

 

Activity - The Century - Americas Time: The Best Years 

Activity - New Deal to Fair Deal - Key Lecture

Activity - The Coils of the Cold War - Key Lecture

Activity - McCarthyism, The Second Red Scare and HUAC

Activity - HUAC, Hollywood, Television and the Cold war

Activity - Teenagers

Activity - Black Americans and Education

Activity - The Century - Americas Time: Happy Days 

 

 

Essays/ Questions

 

Section A - AS Questions

Section B - AS Questions

Section A - A2 Questions

Section B - A2 Questions

 

Required Reading - For which students must produce revision notes in their own preferred format

 

Edexcel GCE History The United States 1917-54: Unit 5 Controversy - The coming of the  Slump and Depression - 1929 -33

Edexcel GCE History The United States 1917-54: Unit 5 Controversy - the New Deal and its Impact

 

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