1930s America was a decade of unparalleled contradiction and complexity. Encapsulated loosely on one end by Black Tuesday of the Great Depression and on the other end by the bombing of Pearl Harbor, the years between 1929 and 1941 were characterized by what Terry Cooney calls "Balancing Acts," a dance between big government and various regional movements, with the depths of the Depression and the height of the Modern Age thrown in for good measure. Despite its cultural richness, the 1930s remain nearly invisible in contemporary discussions of America's artistic, cultural, political, economic, and social development. This site is an attempt to shed light on that decade and emphasize its importance in American thought and culture.
We have elected to view the 1930s through the lenses of its films, radio programs, literature, journalism, museums, exhibitions, architecture, art, and other forms of cultural expression. The menu bar at the top of your browser is a navigation tool which takes you to the front pages of the sub-directories of America in the 1930s :
America in the 1930s was created in June 1998 for the American Studies Program at the University of Virginia. It is a continuing project, with new sites and resources added as students and faculty complete new projects and improved technologies become available. Please return frequently.
The black-and-chrome Rotunda will return you to the American Studies @ UVA homepage and the text America in the 1930s will return you to this page as you navigate the various sub-directories of this site.
The projects on this site are optimally viewed with the use of Shockwave, RealPlayer, and Quicktime.