Age of Technology Scott Petty and Nick Beenen

Significance of New Technology

Technology led to an increase in consumerism, consumerism led to the increased use of credit for buying products, which led to the whole culture that still defines America today, as a culture of consumerism.

The Technology of the era had many influences on economics. Consumerism also gave birth to the advertising business, increased sales for stores, and a rise in the labor force. The increase of credit brought on in the 1920s led to more debt in America. This was the main cause of the Depression: people had more debt than they could pay off.

Household items invented in the 1920's

Simple products such as those in the picture above made everyday life easier, safer, and more comfortable. They also created new pastimes, such as motion pictures and automobiles. The radio helped spread different ideas around the nation quicker through music, and how people expressed themselves in music.

Even though listening to radio was a common pastime of the 1920's, some people thought it was a waste of time and would quickly become unpopular. However, the same was said about television, and look at both of them now. Not only did these new inventions shape our economy, but they also brought about a new sense to American living.

Radio is "virtually useless," "just another disintegrating toy." Radio is "a Tremendous Contribution," "the only means of instantaneous communication yet devised by man." Radio "will elect the next president"; its listeners comprise "an organization that in days to come will be the most powerful in the world." However one judged radio as it grew from a "helpless youngster" into a "husky adolescence," one thing was clear—"There it is, up in the air, absolutely free, waiting for you to pull it down with the aid of electricity."

Automobiles made it easier to travel for leisure and as commutes. As more people bought automobiles, society and economics started to revolve around this new invention. Automobiles provided fast, easy transportation of people and goods to places that previously would have to travel by train, horse, or even walking.


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Center, National Humanities. Radio in the 1920s: Collected Commentary (n.d.): n. pag. American in Class. Web. 13 Feb. 2017.


Created with images by sjb3949 - "automobiles henry ford vintage"

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