1950’s: The Affluent Society

This is FREE sample
This text is free, available online and used for guidance and inspiration. Need a 100% unique paper? Order a custom essay.
  • Any subject
  • Within the deadline
  • Without paying in advance
Get custom essay

The booming economy in the 1950’s was based on many different things like the GI Bill which boosted the economy. The GI Bill act provided generous loans to veterans from the war to help them buy homes, and have a better education. It is still now in place to this day and people who join the navy or naval force can get these benefits. Another reason why the economy boomed in the 1950’s was because of consumer spending.

Consumer spending helped the economy grow so much because people desired to own the same products as their neighbors and soon enough Americans began to get more of a disposable income so buying more and buying luxury items was not a risk. Other items that were bought from consumers were refrigerators, washing machines, vacuum cleaners, and air conditioners.

Also consumerism led to more advertising and it became the fastest growing industry in the United States according to the textbook. Many techniques were often to help the consumers appetite. The overall goal of advertising was to influence choices among many different brands and goods. This helped many Americans own two cars and refrigerators to symbolize their status. The last thing that boomed the economy were blue and white collared jobs. In home ownership showed that the income of average families had risen significantly.

Owning a house in America had risen to 43 percent to 62 percent. Many Americans began to work in white collar jobs. White collar jobs were jobs in sales and management. Their were other jobs too like blue collar jobs which were physical labor and industry. White collar jobs began to overweight blue collar jobs because technology was advancing and labor wasn’t as crucial than sales management. Newer jobs arose and the economy was booming. The baby boom was considered the most exponential growth of the population at the time and women had increased the population of the United States to over 65 million.

A statistical fact from the textbook was a baby was born every 7 seconds (677). The government encouraged the growth of families by offering the GI benefits for home purchases. Suburbs were a major part of the baby boom. Levittown in New York was one of the earliest of the suburb cities. Bill Levitt mass produced hundreds of simple similar looking homes in potato fields. Thousands of families rushed to buy homes and the number of suburban dwellers doubled.

Reasons why people wanted to leave urban areas was because suburban areas has less crime and the congestion wasn’t as bad. People also thought that moving to the suburbs would be a better place to raise their children. According to the textbook, Suburbs came to symbolize the American dream by owning a home, sending their children to good schools, living in safe communities and enjoying economic security​​.

GI benefits also lowered the price for housing so people used it to their advantage to buy a new home in the suburbs. Also Tax deductions also made the move from urban areas to suburbs easier​1​. Urban sprawl was a favorable to the auto industry because as more people moved to suburbs more people were in need for cars. The role of women in the 1950’s reinforced women’s identities as housewives and mothers. In the beginning many women were focused on getting jobs while men went to war. Having babies and establishing families discouraged women from getting jobs.

Many Americans assumed that good mothers should stay at home and take care of her children. The number of women who held jobs actually increased during the 1950’s. Women went to work because they wanted to help their families maintain their comfortable lifestyles. In the textbook “Nearly one third of all married women were part of the paid workforce” (678) The role at home for women was to take care of the children. The jobs that they got to support their families was working in the labor force.

Works Cited

  1. “Baby Boom – AP U.S. History Topic Outlines – Study Notes.” ​Go to the Front Page of StudyNotes​, ​www.apstudynotes.org/us-history/topics/baby-boom/​.
  2. “United States History.” ​Douglas MacArthur​, ​www.u-s-history.com/pages/h2061.html​.
  3. “Women in the 1950s.” ​Khan Academy​, Khan Academy, www.khanacademy.org/humanities/us-history/postwarera/1950s-america/a/women-in-the-1950s​.
  4. http://www.apstudynotes.org/us-history/topics/baby-boom/
  5. http://www.u-s-history.com/pages/h2061.html
  6. http://www.khanacademy.org/humanities/us-history/postwarera/1950s-america/a/women-in-the-1950s

Cite this paper

1950’s: The Affluent Society. (2021, Aug 23). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/1950s-the-affluent-society/



What was the impact of The Affluent Society?
The publication of The Affluent Society by John Kenneth Galbraith in 1958 is widely credited with popularizing the term “affluent society” and influencing the way economists and policymakers think about economic growth and inequality. The book was also highly influential in shaping the economic policies of the Kennedy and Johnson administrations.
What were the main characteristics of The Affluent Society in the 1950's?
The Affluent Society was a time of great prosperity in the United States. The main characteristic of this time was the increase in consumer spending.
Why was the 1950's called a time of The Affluent Society?
The 1950's were called a time of The Affluent Society because there was a large middle class with a lot of disposable income.
We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. By continuing we’ll assume you’re on board with our cookie policy

Peter is on the line!

Don't settle for a cookie-cutter essay. Receive a tailored piece that meets your specific needs and requirements.

Check it out