The Roaring Twenties affected the daily lives of Americans and their traditions. Social and cultural changes swept over the United States. Women became bolder and started acting more pronounced, while Prohibition attempted to ban alcohol. Writer and artists also began creating a different style. Flappers of the Roaring Twenties were basically just women rebelling against society.
During the 1920s, women defied tradition and became flappers. Ceasing being housewives, these flappers began flaunting their independence by attending speakeasies, therefore, illustrating their newly attained risqué attitudes. Along with this deviation in conduct, they became symbols of the unorthodox time period. Symbols represent many themes and messages. In The Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald effectively uses symbolism to support the novel's theme stating money cannot buy happiness.
New media such as the film industry also gave men a “new definition” into the “male appearance” and its importance and variations in the public eye. Masculine appearance now rejected the clothed modesty of the Victorian Age, to the point that by 1930, men no longer wore swimming clothes that “covered the upper part of the body,” a celebration of the male physique and in many cases their sexuality that evolved through the 1920s. Instead of written rules and dictations of courtship, new social mores now declared that “the peer group” would now define “appropriate sexual behavior,” that courtship as a manner of relationships between men and women would now fade as the concept of dating would take its place. This “driving [of] courtship” into
Joshua Zeitz’s history of the flapper reminds us that “The New Woman of the 1920s boldly asserted her right to dance, drink, smoke, and date—to work her own property, to live free of the strictures that governed her mother’s generation. […] She flouted Victorian-era conventions and scandalized her parents. In many ways, she controlled her own destiny” (8). Although some twenty years too soon, the image evoked here equally describes Edna Pontellier in Kate Chopin’s
Flappers of Yesterday “I have even heard it said in praise of the modern women that she does not look upon marriage as her aim in her life, but looks forward to entering to a profession and earning her living independently of male support.” A powerful quote from a writer named Sheila Kaye-Smith (DiPaolo 6). She is talking about the women of the 1920’s started to change and becoming a different person, thinking different ways, and act out differently. With that others had different opinions on how the felt the change in women 's minds in the 1920’s. Although people saw flappers as a disgrace, they were a new kind of feminist with their independence, behavior, and lifestyle.
The 1920’s was a time of profound changes in the sociopolitical beliefs of the American People. After the inflation of government during World War one, President Harding called for a “return to normalcy”, which alluded to some American peoples reverting back to more primitive beliefs. Although, other Americans turned to more progressive beliefs, and began to express and indulge themselves in an unprecedented fashion. The American people reacted in different ways when faced with the various sociopolitical changes that came about during the 1920’s. Many Americans reverted back to beliefs similar to the beliefs of Americans before the Progressive Era.
The twentieth century was marked by radical changes in the social order of the countries. The twentieth century appeared to be for the US the age of transformation from the country with enormous potential in the world's superpower. However, the situation in the United States could not always be characterized by the flourishing and the celebration of a great nation. Some of the historical periods after the World War I proved to be a rather controversial time. One of such periods in the history of the twentieth century America were the 1920's, also called “the roaring 20's”.
1. The two characteristic that can be identified as flapper characteristic in source one, is that younger women after the first war who became flappers wore shorter shapeless dress’s which gave them more freedom and movement. Another characteristic is that they wore make-up and drank alcohol. 2.
Imagine Paris circa 1925. This is the city of light, the creative capital of the world: automobiles are accessible, modern art as well as jazz music is starting to take off, and the Great War is over. Back in America, women have the right to vote, the economy has never been better, and prohibition is in full swing. Despite all these developments, most positive, many have never felt so empty. However still, literary geniuses such as T.S. Eliot, Ernest Hemingway, and F. Scott Fitzgerald all found inspiration after WWI in Paris; the city that, at this time, beckoned many artists on account of its wealth of inspiration.
The fight against women’s oppression has gone through many challenges throughout the decades, one of the most iconic changes being the flapper era. Flappers are well known for embracing their new freedoms such as; drinking, smoking, dancing, being more sexually promiscuous, and not adhering to the expectations that their previous feminist mothers had recently laid just a decade earlier. As flappers gained and used these new freedoms and advancements, many of their conservative elders started to worry about the implications of their new carefree actions. To deal with the flapper's new behavior, the elders began describing flappers as a phase in life that was okay for young adults to go through , while still expecting them to settle down and become a wife and care for the home later in life.