Life for people from 1946-1952

Conforming, Family, and Success in the U.S.A


Girls in the late 1940's at New Trier felt like they had to conform to fit in and to feel mainstream. Everyone had hair that touched their shoulders and that had big curls on the bottom. They also wore white button up shirts with sweaters over top. If I was in this era, I would feel forced to be like everyone else. By everyone acting and looking the same, people might rebel becasue they don't feel like they can or want to fit the mold.
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The families in the 40s and 50 were very close knit. The husband would get home from work and play with the kids and relax, this is when the mother used her skills to care for the family and house. In the photo, the woman is caring a plate of dishes just overseeing the fun and excitement. For women, they did not participate in the fun and games, but had to cook and clean. The husband's worries ablolished as soon as he walked through the door. He no longer had to stress but let the woman do everything. This comercial is for a breakfast ceral, showing how your family could be even happier and healthy. There is also a letter from the kids in the right hand corner. It describes how greatful the children are for their mother's helpful hands. This photo represents typical family life in the 40s and 50s.
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Back then, success for the family meant the wife being happy and willing to take care of the family. The clean house was a form of taking care of the family which was succeeding. When people came over for gatherings, a clean house showed the family was put together and succesful. The vaccum is an example of how the family 'made it' in America. The wife is happy with this object which will make the entire family happy and successful.
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A Teen's Mind between 1946-1952

Being a teen in the this time period, they were expected to fit the perfect mold. But what if you felt like you can't fit the expectations? For example, if you did not want to get married, you were looked down upon because woman depended on their man. Back then, woman could not support themselves because they were not accepted in the work force. Another example, what if you were a woman not attracted to a man? You could not love who you actually loved, and you would have to supress your feelings. To live a life hiding your true self, would be unimaginable. I would want to rebel against society if I felt like I couldn't be like everyone else and that was looked down upon.