How the Great Depression Affected the Lives of Modern Americans
The economic crisis is inevitable in today’s economy. It’s part of a continuous cycle characterized by the growth and decline of the world’s markets. There are so many incredible facts about the great depression and its influence on the world’s history and American politics. The crash of Wall Street in 1929 wasn’t the first of its kind, but the aftermath proved quite devastating.
Other events that followed shaped contemporary America and much of the Western world. When the dust settled after World War II, the USA came out as a leading superpower. However, many hardships had to be endured during this turbulent period. Poverty, unemployment, crime, and corruption are just some problems Americans had to deal with.
The Economic Effects of the Great Depression on Americans
The American economy has always been vulnerable to Stock exchange crashes. Speculative dealings and volatile markets remain the trademarks of US capitalism. However, after Wall Street crashed in 1929, the whole country came to a halt.
Unemployment skyrocketed, while millions became homeless. Savings or deposits evaporated overnight as hundreds of banks collapsed. Whole industries collapsed, and wages plummeted. The entire era is an example of the dangers associated with unregulated markets. But that devastation set the stage for a remarkable recovery that came afterward.
The Great Depression and Unemployment in America
The unemployment rate during the great depression reached incredible proportions. More than one-third of Americans went homeless or unemployed. Losing a job isn’t so bad if there’s a possibility to find new jobs. With the economy in ruins, most US citizens were left to fight for basic survival. Writing about this period is popular among teachers, so they give assignments to students.
Most essay papers concerning the Depression era discuss organized crime, but there’s no lack of new ideas for The Great Depression essays, including bank collapse and political instability. Therefore, don’t hesitate to use professional help, select a sample, and improve academic performance. Learn something new to become a better writer.
Unemployment is just a sample of troubles responsible for lowering the life standard of the average citizen. A great writer, John Steinbeck, explained the gritty mood of those times in his autobiographical stories. Jobless Americans turned to other activities to supplement lost income. Activities such as smuggling illegal contraband.
Many households turned to criminal activities like robbing or prostitution. The government didn’t have a sound response initially. Rich people were too busy getting richer by shorting the stocks of soon-to-be-ruined companies. Or buying the land from poor families who sold everything they had at cheap prices. It looked like the free market wasn’t such a great idea after all.
Future tycoon Joseph Kennedy remains a perfect example of a crude businessman who made his fortune during these turbulent times. Others weren’t so lucky. Hundreds of rich bankers or industrialists lost everything. It will take years and a visionary man named F.D. Roosevelt to get the economy in order.
Market’s Crash and Banks Collapse
When production comes to a halt due to unemployment, real estate usually comes next to suffer damage. Big banks stop lending money while existing loans default. Companies go bankrupt. Then, the banks declare bankruptcy, too. Understanding the mechanisms of our 20th-century economy is a topic for college professors.
Average people aren’t concerned about economic theories, but the social and cultural effects they have to suffer. The 2008 mortgage crisis was nothing compared to the effects of the depression. People lost everything. Jobs, savings, homes. Some things didn’t change. Bank managers and brokers were as greedy as today’s wolves of Wall Street. That’s what got everybody in trouble in the first place.
Rise of Organized Crime
Hollywood produced romantic depictions of the Roaring Twenties and depressive 30s in popular culture. Charming gangsters portrayed as Robin Hood villains remain everybody’s favorite characters. The rise of criminal activity was inevitable in an atmosphere of total despair. The long-term effects of the Great Depression include the infiltration of organized crime in every part of US society.
The culture of violence, corruption, and gangsterism flourished in years to come. Today, almost 30,000 active gangs exist in the USA. That’s the legacy of an economic decline from one hundred years ago.
The Causes of the Great Depression
The stock exchange crash was a culmination of many factors involved in devastating America’s economy. Any research paper will tell you why bank failures created widespread panic, while overproduction disrupted the markets. Politicians also made some terrible decisions. The government introduced high tariffs to protect the domestic economy.
Instead, the government’s plan backfired as inflation increased while income and production plummeted. Speculations with stocks added fuel to the fire. When companies started to go bankrupt, the shares went worthless. The panic started to spread, and the rest is history. Wrong decisions occurred as markets were largely free and unregulated. Sounds familiar, right?
The main causes of the great depression remain:
● Unregulated Stock Exchange.
● Restrictive tariff policy.
● Overproduction and low demand.
● Bank failures.
● Bad government contingency plan.
The Political Changes Resulted from the Great Depression
The most interesting side effects of the Depression include the formation of the US political landscape. The Republican Party lost its support. Democrats led by F.D. Roosevelt conducted much-needed reforms. By the dawn of the Second World War, the country came back to its feet. More importantly, the Democrats started a new era of liberalism.
Civil rights and liberties became important for Americans who suffered a decade of poverty and misery. Roosevelt gained support among Afro-American and minority voters during the great depression. Conservative folks started to favor the Republican Party. On a foreign policy plan, America got more involved in world events. After decades, things haven’t changed.
The Great Depression’s Significance in American History
The great depression start is a landmark of the American past, including the Revolution, Civil War, and Moon landing. What started disastrously eventually shaped US society in many ways. Free markets are more regulated nowadays. People demanded civil liberties. The USA abandoned the gold standard and got more freedom to steer its economy.
Eventually, it survived the crisis as a stronger, more powerful, and changed country. Everything started with some stock speculations and bad judgment. That’s all it takes to collapse the banking system and make millions homeless or unemployed. Subsequent crushes in the 20th century only show how we haven’t learned much from the past. Perhaps it’s in our nature to be greedy. It’s the American way.