Roaring Twenties

Americans, in the years following the end of World War I found themselves in an
era, where the people simply wished to detach themselves from the troubles of

Europeans and the rest of the world. During the years of the Twenties, the
economy was prosperous, there was widespread social reform, new aspects of
culture were established, and people found better ways to improve their
lifestyle and enjoy life. The 1920\'s exemplified the changing attitudes of

American\'s toward foreign relations, society, and leisure activities. Following
the end of World War I, many Americans demanded that the United States stay out
of European affairs in the future. The United States Senate even refused to
accept the Treaty of Versailles which officially ended World War I and provided
for the establishment of the League of Nations. The Senate chose to refuse the

Treaty in the fear that it could result in the involvement of the United States
in future European wars. Americans simply did not wish to deal with, nor
tolerate the problems of Europe and abroad. There were many problems running
rampant throughout the country following the conclusion of the war. One of the
greatest problems which arose was the Red Scare which was seen as an
international communist conspiracy that was blamed for various protest movements
and union activities in 1919 and 1920. The Red Scare was touched off by a
national distrust of foreigners. Many Americas also kept a close eye on the
increasing activities of the Klu Klux Klan who were terrorizing foreigners,
blacks, Jews and Roman Catholics. Once Americans put the war behind them, they
were able to forget the problems of European affairs, and focus on the country,
their town, and themselves. Americans found themselves in a period of reform,
both socially and culturally. Many feared that morality had crumbled completely.

Before World War I, women wore their hair long, had ankle length dresses, and
long cotton stockings. In the twenties, they wore short, tight dresses, and
rolled their silk stockings down to their knees. They wore flashy lipstick and
other cosmetics. Eventually, women were even granted the right to vote with the
passing of the 19th Amendment. It was up to this time period that women were not
seen as an important aspect in American society. As if rebelling from the
previous position of practically non-existence, women changed their clothing,
their fashion, and even cut their hair shorter into bobs which were very similar
to the style of men. The similarities were no mere coincidence, but an attempt
of the women in American society pushing towards equality. Once the women had
the right to vote with the passing of the 19th Amendment, they did not just sit
back. The women of the 1920\'s strived for a position of equality for both men
and women in society. Literature, art, and music also reflected the nations
changing values. There were many famous authors, playwrights, musicians and
artists which left their mark during the Twenties. Sinclair Lewis authored Main

Street (1920), a book which attacked what he considered the dull lives and
narrow minded attitudes of people in a small town. Another great author of the
time was F. Scott Fitzgerald whose works included The Beautiful and Damned, and

Tales of the Jazz Age. F. Scott Fitzgerald\'s The Great Gatsby, exemplified the

American Dream. The story shows the often misconception of the American Dream
being a life of prosperity, parties, happiness, and utopian places. The book
uncovers the characters\' pursuit of this dream only to discover the American

Dream as the American Tragedy. Many Americans who immigrated to the United

States in the 20\'s were believing the same misconception, only to later find the
hidden truth that the American Dream was not all what it was cracked up to be.

One of the greatest American authors to emerge from the Twenties was Ernest

Hemingway. Some of Hemingway\'s most noted works in the Twenties included Across
the River and into the Trees, and In Our Time. Many of Hemingway\'s finest works
presented the attitudes and experiences of the era\'s so called "last
generation." Americans had a hunger for news in the Twenties. Every day
they would flock to the newsstand for the latest information. They would find
the information they needed from various newspapers and periodicals. From the

New York Times they got top-notch foreign correspondence. In the New York World
they could read Franklin P. Adams, Heywood Broun and other outstandingly witty
columnists. In the Twenties the expose of evil-doing in high places became the
mark of a good newspaper: The St. Louis