Robert J Hastings Digging In Analysis

1549 Words7 Pages
Picture the life of today: full of suburbia, technological advances, and an abundance of leisure. Now imagine complete economic downfall. All of the amenities wiped away, family members are losing jobs and savings are no longer enough to afford the essentials. This ghastly time of vast recession and despair is known as the Great Depression, and rest assured, it is properly named. Before the downfall in 1929, the public of the United States was whirled in a roaring atmosphere of advancement and jubilation where the attitude of conserving money was a faint whisper in the blaring music. When the stock market crashed and the economy went for a dive, the United States’ public had to pick up the shattered pieces of their economy without much assistance.…show more content…
Facing this severe amount of loss is not an easy task for the public to face, and many could not bear it all together. Going from having a very decent life to basically fighting tooth and nail to keep your home is a tough concept to fathom for most of America today, but it was the reality. An essay by Robert J. Hastings, “Digging In”, perfectly paints the mindset of his family and most of public in regards to what they had to give up. In this dissertation, Hastings writes about how the state of the economy was and that they gave up whatever possible: “With no dependable income, we cut back on everything possible… turned off city water… sold our Model T Ford…”. Perhaps his feelings toward cutting back are a little softer in retrospect, but picturing what was then lacking in homes completes the perspective on the Great Depression itself. The technology and immediacy of the world was not quite as it is now, as they had to chip their own ice for example, but having to give up any amenities was difficult. A little more center in the United States, were the agriculturalists, who too had to manage the poor economic situation and failing crops, as seen in the poem by Karen Hesse, titled…show more content…
As anyone could imagine, when dealing with the loss and struggle, making ends meet may bring on plenty of stress. While the public scrambled to patch their lives together, the President himself, Franklin D. Roosevelt, was at the head to curtail the damage. In the President’s Second Inaugural Address (of 1937), he described the past behind them and how to move forward, not afraid to describe the true pain felt just years ago: “Repeated attempts at their solution without the aid of government had left us baffled and bewildered… could not find a way to master economic epidemics… hurricanes of disaster”. His understanding of how the people felt may have been key in the survival of the country. Clear-cut term usage, like baffled and bewildered, are key in the understanding of how the public felt, and it is easy to imagine how that may have been. Keeping a household from falling apart at the seems is difficult, especially when almost the whole nation is troubled with that task. Hastings in “Digging In” also pointed out that the state of the country was trickling apart, from community to community without many hopes to get back on their feet: “The closing of Old West Side Mine meant the end of anything resembling a steady job for the next eight years… we were able to save our house from foreclosure”. Though his family and others may have been able to make up enough funds,
Open Document