Monday, October 18, 2010

The Great Depression

Desperate times call for desperate measures and the 1930's were definitely desperate times. When faced with the desperation of the Great Depression it is no surprise that many people around the world would begin looking for alternative forms of government to "fix" what had gone wrong. In Canada new parties were formed (CCF, Social Credit and the rise of the Communist party) in response to what many perceived as the inability of the Canadian government to help Canadian people during these times. In Europe we see the rise of Communism and Fascism as people try to find alternative leadership to bring them out of economic hardship. The rise of this new leadership some might say helped lead us to war. The 1930's are often seen as the precursor to the outbreak of World War Two. What we attempted to find out last period is how this economic depression occurred.

Yesterday's lesson focused on the causes of the Great Depression. Often the blame for the Great Depression is placed on the stock market crash triggering the start of the greatest economic recession of the 20th century.

However, we discussed the main causes of the depression in Canada as:
  • Overproduction of manufactured goods and agricultural products
  • Speculation and "buying on margin" on the stock market
  • Protective tariffs (taxes) that made domestic products cheaper, but stalled global trade.
  • The Dust Bowl - poor farming techniques worsened the drought conditions
If you missed class, it is really important that you catch up on the notes and do your best to stay on top of your readings.

The photo above depicts a "Bennett Buggy" - an out-of-fuel car pulled by a horse. Can you find any other Depression inspired images, cartoons or videos??? If you do please explain.



    This comic illustrates the great depression in a form of domino effects. The word "neighborhood" means the state of the world before the great depression. The domino effects is the important aspect of the comic. If we read from the very bottom to the very top, all these dominos are connected. If one collapses, others will follow up and collapse (domino effect). Anyways, most of the comic is self-explanatory. Enjoy

    -Eric Yang


    This cartoon clearly illustrates that during the 1920's in the U.S. it was seen as a time of economic recovery. Mass media and the availability of credit enhanced consumer demands as well as mass consumption and ultimately spending. People were not cautious and so this cartoon makes a mockery of the careless financial attitude of the Americans during the 1920's which led to the Great Depression and crash of the 1930's.


    This comic is a great example of how some people felt about many new plans such as the "New Deal" as in this comic it illustrates that the only people who really benefited from the stimulus where big corporations and industry while the little guy still was struggling to make ends meat. However this comic only really provides one end of the story and is also very short sighted, as to the average person these new plans would at first seem to only benefit big business in the long run it would help to turn around the economy and bring back jobs.


    This picture is an example of some of the more devastated farms of the prairies during the Great Depression. It is due to erosion, droughts, plague of insects, and top soil being blown away. As supported by the textbook and this image, many farmers who faced this situation could not hope to prosper from the same farm and had to abandon it.

    Steven Zheng


    This picture shows how the benefits of recovery kept the industry, big corporations, railroads and utilities fat with money while everyone else just watched and was unable to do anything. It also shows the government's (the farmer int he photo) priorities when it comes to helping certain groups of people. The companies are kept rich (or in this case fat) and the poor get poorer and can do nothing but sit and watch.

    Seena Davoodi


    This can be considered one of America's greatest past-times. Since then, this game spread like wildfire into Canada too. It's not baseball or football; it's Monopoly. The above image is a photo of a 1935 Monopoly set. Apparently, during the Great Depression, this classic board game became immensly popular. There may be a variety of reasons, but the one that makes the most sense to me was that people probably wanted to escape the hardships of life, and get rich; at least in their imaginations. This shows that even during a depression, times are not always glum. Even when the world's most powerful country is facing servere economic hardship, people still find room for fun.

    -Matthew Lau


    This image represents the effects that the depression had on the working class men and how it affected their lives. It also shows thy in situations of great hardship the working class kept " movin foreword" even though they didn't have the same support of their government.

  8. Cont. Even though many men were left jobless they still had the desire to get back to work to provide for their families.


    The image shows how men who were willing to work had great struggles to find work as no companies were hiring. it also illustrates how depressed everyone was, as the men are not even looking at the sign, since they already know what the answer is going to be.


    This image was taken during the Great depression. Usually we see adults protesting for themselves and their children; however, children are protesting for their parents in this picture. I am wondering where their parents might be?


    this cartoon depicts just how much depression affected people in terms of their jobs. The five men in this image all have their heads down, suggesting that they feel dejected and hopeless due to lack of job. In the picture, there is a billboard ordering jobless men to "keep going" because "we can't take care of our own". The "we" represents a company or a country that cannot provide adequate number of jobs to alleviate the economy. Also a train is nearby; perhaps this implies that many people were searching for workplaces far away from home?


    This cartoon depicts the attitudes the American society faced just prior to the depression. It was made after the Great Depression hit and shows how people thought of their actions that ultimately caused the depression. The image shows the ridiculous attitudes people had prior to the depression and how they thought times would never change. It shows people purchasing items on margin and depleting their natural resources feeling that it would have no affect in the future.

    -Michael Wong

  13. Farm in the depression 1938

    This image displays the devastation of the drought that occured during The Great Depression. This period of time,nicknamed the "Dust Bowl Days" or the "Dirty Thirties", was filled with droughts, sandstorms and diseased crops. Farmers were no longer able to grow enough crops to support their families so thousands abandoned their homes to find jobs in the cities where the economic conditions were just as bad.


    This image of a farm was taken during the Great Depression. The farm had been abandoned because with the climate that the farmers were in there was no need to keep with the farm. They could have worked endlessly on trying to make crops to survive off of but ultimately it was too dry and there were many droughts and sandstorms that ended up destroying the crops. Many farms just like this had been abandoned in hope of finding a job in the city in order for families to provide for themselves.


    This photo shows one of the many men and women who slumbered around Canada looking for jobs and money. This photo depicts a group of unemployed men lining up for free doughnuts and coffee. Although doughnuts and coffe may be filling for some, not everyone could be supplied with free food. The picture itself itself is gloomy, and the men look depressed and sad. This picture conveys a feeling that there was a 'Great Depression' not only in the economy but in emotional state of Canadian citizens.


    This photo does a good job of showing the domino effect of the Great Depression. Although starting with the collapse of minor things, the Great Depression eventually gained enough energy to topple the entire US economy. In the picture, you can also see former Wall Street business men who have lost everything due to the collapse of the US economy.


    Not everyone was happy with the New Deal that was the U.S. government's attempt to assuage the effects of the Great Depression. In this cartoon, we see the other side of the argument; indeed, the small drawing shows the starkness with which some people regarded their lives during the Dirty Thirties. The New Deal is shown as being a Trojan Horse in front of the American Wall that boasts a plaque of the American Constitution. This view shows that the cartoonist believes that the New Deal would not provide a respite from the Depression but rather chain the population and strip away the basic rights delineated by the American Constitution.

  18. ^8 posts above
    -Daniel Trakulhoon


    This photo displays the harsh realities of the Great Depression during the 1930's. It shows a donut and coffee shop with the sign "Free Donuts and Coffee for the Unemployed" hanging outside it's window in an effort to help the hungry masses struggling to feed their families. The enormous line waiting outside the shop serves as evidence showing just how low many of the working class men must stoop in order to stay alive and support their families.

    On first glance, it almost reminds one of homeless individuals flocking to a homeless shelter in an effort to stay warm. Says something about the atmosphere surrounding that time period.

    - Anthony


    This is a picture of a breadline in New York City, 1932. This long line represents the inflation of prices and the hardship that people must go through to obtain meager amounts of food. In particular, this image depicts a government relief program in which free food is given with private funds. Thus many people are trying to "cash in" on this very rare deal. These types of programs were usually catered towards the unemployed.

    Saahil Siddoo


    The cartoonist was trying to demonstrate the state of confusion that the working men were in. In North America at that time, the governments were trying to encourage people to spend more money. However, the people were faced with a quandary. They have to save money in order to feed their family, as more workers became unemployed, and those who still had jobs probably had pay cuts. And yet, they wanted to contribute to the recovery of economy by spending more money.


    This picture illustrates not only the many hardships people faced in the great depression but the difficulties people dealt with in finding jobs. Jobs in the 1930's were so scarce that signs were erected in order to wave anyone off hoping to be hired. However, even men and women who did possess jobs were given the bare minimum in pay, food and treatment.

  23. I really hope no one posted this.

    This photo shows how desperate times were, and how children were used to maybe get a few cents or so because jobs were minimal. When people see kids out on the street begging for money, it has a greater effect on them then a middle aged man begging. These kids are begging money for their families tobacco farm, and it pains me how the parents have to exploit and use their children to get a few cents, but this was a desperate time. And i guess desperate times call for desperate measures.


    This picture shows children during the great depression lining up for free food. This shows the hardship felt by many families during the war. It also brings up the question of what happened to these kids. Where are their families? Are they orphans? is it a soup kitchen just for children?
    You can also see that the child in the front of the picture isn't wearing any shoes probably because his family can't afford them.
    -Robert Desjardins


    This is a picture of a single soup kitchen in Montreal during the Great Depression. It shows a room full of men eating the little rations they have all in a room. It shows the hardship the people have that they have they necessity to rely on welfare during the hardships. I noticed that in this picture, most of the men here are shown to be quite depressed as they are eating with there heads down with only a single person looking up among the crowd. Another possible reason they could be putting there heads down is that they are ashamed they had to rely on a soup kitchen to simply survive.
    -Jeremy Leung


    This picture depicts president Herbert Hoover's reaction to the stock market speculation. From my point of view, it looks like that he did not support the speculation and wanted people to have another way to do business.

    Edward Zhao


    This picture of the Great Depression shows numerous men waiting outside a welfare relief department. They are waiting to receive free bread and and other types of food. One can tell from the faces of the men in the picture that this was a horrible time to live in. The sheer amount of people waiting outside the relief department shows that the Great Depression affected a large number of individuals not just one community. Very few of the men are carrying briefcases this shows how bad the economy was in the 1930s.

    ~ Harmillan Oberoi

  28. The beginning of 1930s were the start of Great Depression which resulted economic improvement and growth which made life easier for the people in the future.



    This video explains how the great depression affected business men and how people were going broke really quick due to low wages and could not feed themselves or family