What are some examples of corruption (government and private) in the US following WWI?
Thie following is the actual essay question and I am having a hard time finding specific examples of corruption to support my thesis and build the body of the essay:
"Citing F. Scott Fitzgerald, T. S. Eliott and Ernest Hemingway, discuss the loss of the American dream with its inherent corruption and the rising disenchantment with urban American life after World War I."
There was plenty of corruption in the 1920s, both government and private (and often intertwined).
On the governmental level, just look at the administration of Warren Harding. His administration was wracked with scandals, the most famous of which was the Teapot Dome scandal. This was a scandal that involved high government officials taking bribes in exchange for granting various people the right to drill for oil on public lands.
On the private level, Prohibition was perhaps the greatest cause of corruption. It led to a huge increase in organized crime (you mention Fitzgerald in your explanation and it is no accident that Gatsby was apparently involved in bootlegging), which is surely a form of corruption. Another famous episode was the "Black Sox" scandal in which gamblers paid baseball players to "fix" the 1919 World Series (this was also alluded to in The Great Gatsby).
If you look into America's fear of communism you can actually find quite a lot of examples of corruption within the judicial system (Which you could take as either private or goverment corruption). By that I'm talking about cases that sparked a lot of controversy in America. A famous case that first comes to mind would be the Saccco and Vanzetti case. You could link the American Dream into this becuase they were immigrants wrongly sent to death for their political beliefs (in communism).
As for politics and the government some examples could be: The quota system, The Ohio Gang, Teapot Dome scandal, Prohibition
Thanks for the examples! I was able to make them fit into my essay and tie the writings of the mentioned authors into the theme!