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Describe the rise of the mass-consumption economy, led by the automobile industry,...

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marwa291 | Student, Grade 11 | Honors

Posted April 12, 2012 at 7:28 PM via web

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Describe the rise of the mass-consumption economy, led by the automobile industry, during the 1920s.

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted April 12, 2012 at 7:44 PM (Answer #1)

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During the 1920s, Americans became much more oriented towards consumption.  There were more goods and services available for them to buy and they wanted those things more than they had.

This change is often associated with the automobile industry, but it owes just as much to the practice of selling on credit and to advertising.  The 1920s were the first time that modern advertising was used to make people feel they needed things that they had not previously needed.  For example, advertising was used to make people feel the need to use Listerine by making them worry about bad breath.  The consumer culture was made possible by the introduction of buying on credit.   This allowed consumers to buy many more of the new goods that they had come to desire.

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