Socia-cultural influences of the Lost Generation

Thank you to @constitutional_maryland for the article submission! Read below for some history behind the cultural changes that occurred in the 1920’s due to the influence of the Lost Generation. Be sure to click above to follow on Instagram!Flapper

After World War One the younger generation became known as the Lost Generation; with what was to come, known as the Roaring Twenties, we see the concept of a socio-cultural change after World War One with involvement from the Lost Generation.

As the roaring twenties became known as a prospering time in historic literature, especially novels, began changing the way literature was written. A novel written in 1925 called The Great Gatsby changed “much of American Literature.” (Hardy) This novel changed the way authors thought of writing and moved from the old style of Shakespeare into a new movement of literature, finally developing into the more common style we still see used up to this day.  Langston Hughes played a key role in the Harlem Renaissance, which was a movement that developed to play a role in the poetry and other forms of writing. Hughes’ main concept for writing was to promote the “African American situation in New York to express the struggle and hardships of the black community.” (Gaynor) Hughes wanted to help the situation of black communities especially in New York; in turn Hughes transformed and created a new way of writing. Literature changed the way the public viewed the world around them and events in local communities.

As a key staple to many cultures around the world, art masterpieces changed and many artists emerged throughout the roaring twenties. An art mastermind most people have heard of is Picasso. Picasso created a brand new art form known as Cubism. Cubism is made of simple geometric shapes, interlocking planes; collage is also considered a part of cubism. This art form changed the way in which art was fundamentally created, and in turn made the name Picasso a house hold name for years to come.

With the ever increasing demand for homes and the urbanization of cities across the world from London, England to New York, New York had to change how buildings were being built. The fundamentally different structures became known as skyscrapers that scratch the top of the sky. This fundamental development created a cheaper and efficient way to produce homes and businesses.  Art in the form of painting and architecture would help shape the world for years to come.

Many people will argue that the socio-cultural change after World War One had nothing to do with a lost generation. The main argument for this viewpoint is that the Twenties were almost like a modern Renaissance. This is completely thought of in the wrong way! The change was all due to World War I, which changed the philosophy of so many people and in turn created a yearning for peace and culture to spread throughout the world. The idea is generally thought of in the sense that it has nothing to do with the Lost Generation, but in reality I believe it does.

Ever since the existence of man, music has been a colossal portion of each culture and always is changing. The Twenties are no exception in that it brought on another change in musical culture. As the older and slower music began to die away, a brand new form of music, known as jazz, came alive. Originating in African American communities, jazz was first known as the devils music by the older generation of people and was even considered to be threatening to the old way of life.  With the development of the phonograph, records were selling in the tens of millions and began promoting this new style worldwide, sparking a debate between supporters of jazz and the detractors who did not favor jazz.

The ongoing debate about the topic of whether or not the Lost Generation had an impact on the Roaring Twenties will outlast my lifetime and will never truly be settled, but I stand firm and fast that the members of the Lost Generation without a doubt, played a crucial role on the society of the Roaring Twenties.

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