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Since Yesterday: The 1930's in America,…

Since Yesterday: The 1930's in America, September 3, 1929 to September 3,… (1940)

by Frederick Lewis Allen

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I obtained a card permitting me to borrow from the Dubuque Public Library on Feb. 15, 1947, and this is the first book I checked out, since I was so entranced by the predecessor volume, Only Yesterday. I started the book on Feb 15 and said: "a good book." My comment on the day I finished the book, Feb 24: "Good." ( )
  Schmerguls | Jul 18, 2013 |
Since Yesterday (1940) is a journalistic history of the 1930's in America. Frederick Lewis Allen also wrote Only Yesterday (1930) about the 1920's, and these two books are probably his most well known and popular. It is written in a conversational tone for a popular audience and at times is really entertaining and fascinating. It's at its best discussing popular culture and the changing zeitgeist of America, the political and economic history is often a bit dry. It's valuable for learning about the era because it was one of the first attempts at writing a history of the 1930's, when the events were still fresh, the episodes Allen focuses on are what the people of the time found the most important and foremost in their conscious. Thus one gets a sense of how events flowed together, how one thing effected the next, a more holistic view. The 1930's were very dynamic for a lot of reasons, probably one of the most rapidly changing of the 20th century despite it's sorid reputation for gangsters, dust bowls and the depression - World War II was largely a product of the 1930's and that war defined the rest of the century (and beyond). My interpretation (not Allen's) is that modern technological innovations had begun to spread to the masses: radio, machinery, electricity - these things created more free time, rising rates of education and political involvement - it's obviously part of a continuing process that can be seen in the world today in China, India, etc.. we have much to learn about the changes other countries are going through by looking back and the changes in our own country in the 1930's.

--Review by Stephen Balbach, via CoolReading (c) 2008 cc-by-nd ( )
  Stbalbach | May 6, 2008 |
Fascinating, like being there! ( )
  vivienbrenda | Jun 20, 2007 |
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To Letticia Cunningham Rogers who has a wise head and a warm heart
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Do you remember what yu were doing on September 3, 1929?
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0060913223, Paperback)

"Vividly and with great skills he marshals the men, the mountebanks, the measures, and the events of ten years of American life and causes them to march before us in orderly panathenaic procession."--Saturday Review

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:05 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Heralded by the New York Times as "a shrewd, concise, wonderfully written account of America in the '30s . . . a reminder of why history matters," the bestselling sequel to Only Yesterday illuminates the events that brought America back from the brink Published in 1940, Since Yesterday takes up where Lewis's classic leaves off. Opening on September 3, 1929, in the days before the stock market crash, this information-packed volume takes us through one of America's darkest times all the way to the light at the end of the tunnel. Following Black Tuesday, America plunged into the Great Depression. Panic and fear gripped the nation. Banks were closing everywhere. In some cities, 84 percent of the population was unemployed and starving. When Franklin D. Roosevelt took office in 1933, public confidence in the nation slowly began to grow, and by 1936, the industrial average, which had plummeted in 1929 from 125 to fifty-eight, had risen again to almost one hundred. But America still had a long road ahead. Popular historian Frederick Lewis Allen brings to life these ten critical years. With wit and empathy, he draws a devastating economic picture of small businesses swallowed up by large corporations-a ruthless bottom line not so different from what we see today. Allen also chronicles the decade's lighter side: the fashions, morals, sports, and candid cameras that were revolutionizing Americans' lives. From the Lindbergh kidnapping to the New Deal, from the devastating dust storms that raged through our farmlands to the rise of Benny Goodman, the public adoration of Shirley Temple, and our mass escape to the movies, this book is a hopeful and powerful reminder of why history matters.… (more)

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