AMS220H1: Depression Era America: History, Politics, Culture


This course explores the 1930s on a number of interconnected levels, prompting students to link the economic, political, and cultural planes of Americans’ lived experience in an informed way. It starts with the impact of the 1929 Crash, looking at the ways this reshaped values, and conceptions of race and gender, and also allowed unprecedented critiques and organizational forms to emerge. It then considers local and federal responses to economic catastrophe, emphasizing the emergence of regulatory mechanisms that further reshaped social relations. With this foundation in place, the course turns to consider three forms of artistic production in which the social dynamics of the age found powerful echo: FSA photography and WPA murals; experimental literature; and cinema.

Society and its Institutions (3)