Honorable Style in Dishonorable Times: American Gangsters of the 1920s and 1930s

In: Historical Events

Submitted By clarechin
Words 6179
Pages 25
Beshears, Laura: Honorable Style in Dishonorable Times: American Gangsters of the 1920s and 1930s
Journal of American Culture (33:3) [Sep 2010] , p.197-206.

Honorable Style in Dishonorable Times: American Gangsters of the 1920s and 1930s
Laura Beshears. The Journal of American Culture. Malden: Sep 2010. Vol. 33, Iss. 3; pg. 197, 10 pgs
Abstract (Summary)
Prohibition, which came into effect in July of 1920 with the passing of the Eighteenth Amendment, also illustrated the progressives' idealism, as many believed that the elimination of alcohol, because it allegedly created "poverty, marital distress, and negligence," would cleanse society (Mordden 141). [...] the birth of the radio and the movies as well as the development of flight induced excitement and fostered a vision of a society engaged in perpetual technological advancement (Mordden 47). [...] Horatio Alger, Jr. and his late nineteenth-century books- portraits of men who, born underprivileged, rose to wealth and success through hard work, honesty, self-confidence, commitment, and a bit of luck (Weiss 53-54) - characterized the progressive spirit, as it encouraged people to work hard for a better future and for the fulfillment of the American dream.
Full Text (5892 words)
Copyright Blackwell Publishing Ltd. Sep 2010

"You don't need to be ordering fancy duds," Frankie Rio advised his boss as a tailor took measurements of Capone's swollen physique at the Lexington Hotel. "You're going to prison. Why don't you have a suit made with stripes on it?"
"The hell I am," Al shot back. "I'm going back to Florida for a nice long rest, and I need some new clothes before I go." In this irrationally jaunty mood, he ordered two new lightweight suits and made plans for an extended stay at his Palm Island hacienda.
(Bergreen 485)
This excerpt from Laurence Bergreen's biography of Al Capone informs the reader…...

Similar Documents

Blacks in Paris During the 1920s

...Blacks World Spotlight: on the International Stage in the 1920s During World War I the United States bought nearly 200,000 African-American soldiers to France. Majority of the African American soldiers were from the southern region of the United States of America. Many Blacks stayed after the war, generating a permanent Black population in France. The ending of the First World War also marked the beginning of the New Negro Movement or Harlem Renaissance in the United States. During this time African Americans emerged as talented, creative intellectuals leaving their footprint on 1920s America. While much focus of the New Negro Movement is centered in the United States, it indeed was an international affair. The purpose of this research is to examine how a number of African Americans launched their creative debut from the international stage of Paris, France. Additional focus will center on black artists turning to Africa as a source and facture in the art. Last but not least, the effort of Author Schomburg to collect and house international works about blacks will be addressed. Utterly intrigued by African Americans and thoroughly consumed with their talents, the French displayed a respect for Blacks unseen in the United States. While a great number of African-American soldiers remain in Paris, many journeyed back to the United States. Those soldiers certainly were not greeted by change. The United States remained the same racially tensed nation. If there was any change,......

Words: 3126 - Pages: 13

Leadership Style of the American Red Cross

...The American Red Cross is one of the oldest and most successful charitable organizations in America today. Since its founding in 1881, the Red Cross has helped millions of people around the globe. Recently, the Red Cross has dedicated some of its vast resources with the guidance of a new CEO refocusing the leadership and mission of this respectable company. This company in recent past was floundering under a leadership and management style that had become bloated and unproductive. The board of directors had swelled to more than 50 members with no clear lines of communication between the board, the CEO, and management. This created a void as directives and tasks became poorly understood and remained unfinished. The goals of the Red Cross have always have been honorable. The attainment of these goals had become unmanageable. There are several leadership styles that would be applicable for an institution of this size and scope. A visionary style is most appropriate when an organization needs a new direction. Using this leadership style will move people toward a new set of shared dreams where the leader will not only articulate where the group needs to go but also how it will get there. The Red Cross desperately needed a new way of doing things. A visionary style works here because it encourages ample communication in both directions. It allows workers and volunteers to be innovative, to experiment with new directions and to take risks. The Red Cross...

Words: 1126 - Pages: 5

American Gangster

...Somebody or Nobody The movie scene that I chose was “Somebody or Nobody” from the film American Gangster. This film is one of my all-time favorite films. This film is about a drug kingpin Frank Lucas and takes you back to the nineteen seventies and the streets of Harlem in that time. In order to make a successful film, it takes the director, production designer, and the art director. The director of this film is Ridley Scott. He is one of the greatest directors of our time. The director of the film usually is the person who directs and the actors and the film crew while making the film. He also develops the vision of the film and carries out the vision, deciding how the film should look. The director is pretty much the supervisor. He also gets to decide the camera angles, lens effects and lighting. The director also directs what tone each scene should have and what the audience should gain from the cinematic experience. The director has a say so in everything in the film from changing the script to the post- production process. The production designer of this film is Arthur Max. The production designer is the person responsible for the overall look of a film. The production designer also has one of the key roles in creating of the films. A production designer works side by side with the director and producer, they decide the settings and style to visually tell the story of the film. The production designer and the art director have similar responsibilities. The......

Words: 1011 - Pages: 5

Fashion Changes 1920 to 1930

...The 1920s and 1930s was a decade of change in Amerike.1920's were a time of wealth and luxury, while the 1930s were more sober as the economy sank. Every decade has its own specific style of fashion, however, no matter how good or bad the times were. Both day and evening fashion for women and men reflected society's attitude towards the economy and the perception of the evolution of society Short hair stands throughout the decade. Women who keep their long locks pulled back at the nape of his neck in a chignon. Boy-like figure was the desired shape, and dropped waist hip. Hemlines gradually approached the mid of 1920's, when the famous "flapper" look became popular, the scars went down again, with jagged scars favored. Long necklaces - in particular, strings of pearls - were accessories of choice, and a tan or flesh colored stockings were popular. Red lips, dark eyes, skin and powdered finished 1920s feminine look. The most popular mod for working men in 1920 was a suit. This style has been immortalized in various characters, from Al Capone to F. Scott Fitzgerald. Men's fashion in the 1920s was heavily influenced by athletes and other famous people. Men generally want to look younger and more athletic and performs graceful white shirts under their suits. Hats, such as driving caps and hats were popular. Short fat ties worn for everyday looks, while the bow ties were popular for evening wear. During the 1930, more feminine style returned to form, emphasizing the chest,......

Words: 429 - Pages: 2

The Boom in the 1920s

...The effects of the “Boom”- USA 1920s The 1920s was a time in America of extreme changes in society as well as in lifestyles and industries. New inventions were made. It was the time when the USA experienced its Boom, but what was the Boom, and did everyone gain of it? During the Boom USA underwent huge changes. It was experiencing a decade of a great business boom in almost every industry. New Jobs were created because things like radios, TVs Hoovers, washing machines, refrigerators were produced. Since the people were employed they could spent more money, and simply buying something had a major economic impact. It was all a circle. Someone had to produce what was bought meaning people were employed, he would then earn money for his work and usually spent some of it, buying goods produced by someone else introducing that someone into the cycle. Henry Ford also noticed that the demand for his cars rise, which lead to him producing more cars. As a consequence he introduced a whole new production way, called mass production. Mass production is the creation of many products in a short period of time, it’s a technique that aims for low unit costs and high output. Other industries took up his system and shopping habits changed as chain stores like Woolworth established. So people bought cars which caused an overflow in cars in the traffic system. Highways were built amongst them the famous Route 66. The Highway is also known as “the mother road” it runs through the USA, from......

Words: 930 - Pages: 4

America in the 1920s and 1930s

...understand why they happen and better the future. In the United States in the early 1920s, a new stage appeared with different movements in the areas of politics, economics, society, culture, and foreign policy. By the events that led to the 1930s, new crazes had developed in many of these areas, while other areas remained in continuity. From the 1920s to the 1930, there were several factors that contributed to the changes in American society. The 1920s began shortly after in World War I when the United States and the Allies defeated the Germans in 1918. Many Americans were fed up with Woodrow Wilson, the 28th president from 1913 to 1921. The first election of the 1920s scoured Republican Warren G. Harding against Democrat James M. Cox. Cox supported Wilson and the League of Nations in the election. However, Harding won the election in a landslide, which was a sign of America¡¦s frustration with Wilson and his optimistic and liberal policies. The start of the new conservative era restored the power to the Republicans after the presidential election of the 1920. Harding made quite a few excellent appointments to his cabinet although he failed to demonstrate to have much intelligence. Charles Evans Hughes was appointed to be the Secretary of State, Andrew W. Mellon appointed as the Secretary of the Treasury and as leader of the Commerce Department, and Herbert Hoover bumped up the 1920s to a new level. On the other hand, Harding also appointed some of the worst......

Words: 2717 - Pages: 11

American Gangster

...Shannel Henry Dr. Brennan HUMN 1002 4/15/2014 Baby Face In the 1930s the United States was experiencing a depression era. This era known as ,The Great Depression, had a great effect on the movie industry. Films began to focus on sex, violence, infidelity, and promiscuous ways to target new audiences, mainly the males. The other types of genres like horror, gangster, and musical were still high in Demand during this era also. Social realism came about, which is a style of art that focuses on the ugly realities of the modern life and sympathizes with the working class people, especially the poor. The movies that were being produce during this time was to interest the men, which cause the movie producers to give women the lead roles and takeover the movie screen. A movie example is the film Baby Face. Baby Face, a movie directed by Alfred E. Green shows how women took over the ‘Big Screen’. This movie is based on Lily powers, who is played by Barbara Stanwyck, and how she moves up through her social class and financial status. She uses her beauty and her intelligence to get what she wanted from the men that she came into contact with. An example of her getting her way is at the end of the movie, when she wants the bank to fund her 15,000 to have a fresh start, but instead they gave her a new position at a firm in Paris. This is basically her getting her way because she has her new start from the scandal. Social realism is portrayed because every man that she met...

Words: 899 - Pages: 4

1920s and 30s

...The 1920s were a decade characterized by great change. Even though it was the decade after world war 1, it was almost 10 years of improvement for many Americans. Industries were still thriving in America and they were actually richer and more powerful than before World War I. So what event made the 1930’s so different? The Great Depression quickly turned those carefree years into ones of turmoil and despair. The decade after the first world war ever saw tremendous change. Progressivism was a leading factor of World War 1 and in the 1920’s the evidence can be seen. Industries were making their products at an increasing rate. Products that were not popular before World War I were now used by millions of Americans. Cars were only used by about 9 million Americans and by the end of the roaring 20’s that number had reached over thirty million. Also many new inventions were created making life for Americans much easier. Radios, vacuum cleaners, irons, washing machines, and refrigerators were the new electronics that everyone had to have. Refrigerators allowed for better production and transportation of food products. This allowed you to keep food cold and fresh making exporting food a valuable part of the economy. These new inventions were making home life easier for men and women. Not only were American families buying these new items but they also started purchasing stock in companies at an increased rate. Buying stocks was available before the war but was not really done. Soon...

Words: 1680 - Pages: 7

Time

...The Beginning of TIME: How Britton Hadden and Henry R. Luce Changed the Magazine Industry In 1923 Henry R. Luce and Briton Hadden released a most original an unique piece of work; Time magazine. Time magazine became and remained completely different from its predecessors and competitors. It changed the way people became informed, and changed the entire magazine industry. Journalists before the 1920's had to deal with the blatant attack on freedom of speech and press led on by president Woodrow Wilson's administration, and it left them too afraid or unwilling to speak their minds. As a result rarely was the news delivered noteworthy, and too many Americans were left generally uniformed. Once the press finally did recover from the suppressive Wilson administration, the economy simultaneously experienced a great advance. With Warren G. Harding, a former journalist, as president now and the oppressive Wilson out of the picture it was an ideal time for the press to experiment (Daly 178-190). Luce and Hadden met each other when they were just young boys attending Hotchkiss boarding school in Connecticut. Though their relationship was incredibly competitive from the very beginning and their conflicting attitudes led them to work together with an effective energy. Neither of them came from much money, but that didn't matter so much as they made friends that had plenty. Endowed with the great ability of drive and dedication. Enthusiastic and confident in their ideas,......

Words: 2654 - Pages: 11

Why Did American Industry Boom in the 1920's?

...The following were reasons why American industry boomed in 1920’s. i. The Impact of the car ii. Credit iii. Policies of the Republican Party. Which of these reasons do you think was the most important? Explain your answer referring only to the three points stated above. (10) I think the most important reason why the American industry boomed in the 1920’s was the impact of the car. Ford was the first car and it was founded in 1903 by Henry Ford in Detroit, Michigan but it business really boomed from 1918 onwards. The first car produced was the ‘Model T’. Its first cost was $1200 but by 1928 it was reduced to $295 meaning it was affordable for all families so most people’s quality of life was improved. Due to the low prices and the new technology of the car, it appealed to lots of families meaning mass production was to occur to have the supply to meet the demand consequently leading to more employees for cheap prices doing small jobs. Not only did the car supply all of this but in the mid 1920’s Ford cars consumed 90% of petrol, 80% of rubber and 75% of plate glass which increased other industries profits too triggering the boom. All of these......

Words: 793 - Pages: 4

Big Band Era of the 1930s

...The Big Band Era of the 1930s The Big Band Era of the 1930s Introduction- The Great Depression during the 1930s was an extreme struggle for all Americans, but the music of the Big Band Era lifted the spirits of struggling citizens. I. Revival of music during the Great Depression A. Effects of the Great Depression on the music industry B. How music started to regain its popularity during harsh times C. The role of technology in reviving the music culture II. Impact of the Big Band Era A. Evolution of Jazz into Swing B. Characteristics of the swing culture III. “Big Bands” of the Big Band Era A. How the jazz genre began B. The components of a “big band” C. Louis Armstrong: prominent music icon of the 1930s Conclusion- The Big Band Era during the 1930s helped many Americans escape the hardships of their every day lives during the Great Depression and has left a huge impact on America which still resides in people today. The Big Band Era of the 1930s Music affects the lives of people all around the world, and it plays a major role in the development of all cultures. People use music to express themselves, an event, or thoughts in a way simple, ordinary words cannot. Because people are constantly changing, music also changes throughout the times. Many different eras of music are well known, but one very prominent timeframe in music is America’s Big Band Era of the 1930s. The Big Band Era uplifted the......

Words: 1905 - Pages: 8

The American Soldier 1860-1920

...HS 383 Dr. Geib March 8, 2011 Paper 2 The American Soldier, 1860-1920 The philosophy and makeup of the United States military underwent more drastic changes during the sixty years between the outbreak of the Civil War and the conclusion of World War I. During this time period, the military went from small, localized, unprofessional and poorly trained groups to large, centralized, professional military units that rivaled the best militaries in the world. The transition of the U.S. Military started when the United States’ foreign policy increased their interests worldwide following the Civil War, engaging in conflicts in both the Caribbean and in Asia, culminating when the United States entered World War I not in their own interest, but rather in the interest of protecting European allies. This signaled the U.S.’s new role as a world power that has interests in global stability and maintaining strong alliances. However, none of these military advancements would have been likely to take place had the initial priority to increase military operations hadn’t occurred solely to preserve the Union. The Civil War began with the bombardment of Fort Sumter in April 1861, but both the Union and Confederate armies were not prepared to fight a ground war at that time, as armies had to be raised, mobilized, trained, and supplied for the upcoming war. The first ground battle of the war, the Battle of Bull Run, was not fought until more than three months after the attack on...

Words: 1795 - Pages: 8

American Styles of Negiotiation

...A style of negotiation is influenced by personality and ability of the negotiator as well as the cultural, political, and emotional situations. Non-verbal behavior play very important role in a negotiation process. Some of the characteristics typical to American style of negotiation can be misinterpreted by others due to cultural differences. Some of the characteristics of American style of negotiation are: impatience, arrogance, poor listening, insular, legalistic, naïve, fair, friendly, flexible, risk takers, pragmatic, and cooperative. (McDonald, 2001) Some of these characteristics can be misinterpreted in other cultures. Americans get down to business quickly. They are impatient, and give little attention to relationship building. American negotiators are time conscious, and try to close the deal quickly. (Dresky, 2006) But, in other cultures, especially in Asian countries, negotiators take time in getting down to business. Impatience of American negotiators cause misunderstanding during negotiation. Negotiators of other cultures interpret it as a lack of concern for relationship building and rigorous process. American style of negotiation is misinterpreted as an unemotional style of negotiation which lacks commitment. (Dresky, 2006) In many cultures negotiators are looking for emotional bonding. A rational style of negotiation is perceived as lack of commitment. American negotiators are time conscious. But, this style of negotiation may be misinterpreted as an......

Words: 656 - Pages: 3

Gangster Rap

...Ryan Boeh Music apparition American gangster Rap is a popular type of music in today's society, but it didn't just come to be. In the 1970's rap emerged from other types of music to become what it is today. Rap is influenced and inspired by other types of music. Its influences are closely related to each other. Rap music has derived from various types of music. In a world in which people are constantly confronted with violent acts such as rape, assault, murder, school shootings and other violence's, society is eager and anxious to find and remove all causes of these cultural ills. All the blame can not be put on one particular thing but a heavier degree of blame can be put on one thing. Some of the violent acts listed above are expressed through music. Gangster rap, which followed rap music, developed in the 1980's. Though the immaturity and lack of teaching morals has an impact on how we view and take in things, the context of gangster rap presents a negative image for people in society. Rap music has derived from other music categories. One of the first musical influences on rap music is hip hop. Hip hop is comprised of graffiti, break dancing, attitude and the dress of the people who listened to it. The start of hip hop, along with rap, can be located in the Bronx of New York. There were three major events that occurred in the Bronx that contributed to the hip hop subculture. The first event was the building of an expressway through the Bronx. This plan was......

Words: 2167 - Pages: 9

Management Styles: American Vis-a-Vis Japanese

...Japan and the U.S. share a low-growth economy configeration and their management styles are beginning to merge. Management Styles: American vis-a-vis Japanese Charles Y. Yang THE JAPANESE STYLE of management has in recent vears been drawing a great deal of attention from American managers because of its apparent ability to insure organization stability in the face of unexpected external changes. At the same time, a slower rate of economic growth in Japan is compelling Japanese executives to .search for improvement iu management efficiency by focusing their attention on the American type of management. FALL 1977 This trend to draw on each other's strengths in order to better cope with growing external pressures is significant because both eountries now share a similar socio-economic situation characterized by a low rate of economic growth, a high degree of vulnerability to external variations and an advanced stage of technological development. A comparative analysis of the quality of management must first determine what is to be measured. 23 If the criterion is profit performance, most of the major Japanese companies compare favorably with leading American firms, and that is where the comparison ends. What is more meaningful is to measure the extent to which the underlying factors have contributed to profit perfonnance in the past, and how they will continue to function in the new socio-economic setting. These underlying factors consist of......

Words: 4413 - Pages: 18