Post War in America
By: Jenny Lee Period 7
Postwar posterity rose as many American families gained an economic boost. Luxury goods and leisure activities became prevalent especially among the middle and upper class as the middle class nearly doubled in size by the 1950s. Families began to have their own washing machines and 90% of households had their own television set. The 1950s was symbolized by an increase in luxury items and entertainment.
One of the first revolutionized home construction began in the town of "Levittown". These new style of homes lured in many families from cities into suburbs. A new phenomenon became prevalent known as the "white flight" as thousands of white families transitioned from the Northeast and Midwest crowded cities and fled to new suburban areas, leaving an overwhelming number of poverty stricken blacks in the cities.
After their impact during the war, women had accounted for nearly 1/4 of jobs in America. More opportunities in jobs were open to female workers as they began to provide for their families. However, the 1950s glorified the ideal housewife which interfered and set up a impossible balance between that and maintaining a job.
After the war, a huge leap in birthrates dramatically increased. This was known as the "baby boom" as over 50 million newborns were brought in by the end of the 1950s. These baby boomers provided mass impact on American culture and economy. A huge rise in enrollment of schools took off and businesses boomed that targeted on these groups. As the first baby boomers matured, they gave birth to a second generation boom of children.
Cars boomed after the war as it indicated a sign of wealth and prosperity. A majority of American families (mostly white middle and upper classes) owned their own cars as it became more of a standard to own one or more cars. These cars provided more comfort and mobility compared to before the war and were parked within garages in cities and suburbs.