Standard 7.6b The Cold War Analyze the causes and consequences of social and cultural changes in postwar America, including educational programs, the consumer culture and expanding suburbanization, the advances in medical and agricultural technology that led to changes in the standard of living and demographic patterns, and the roles of women in American society. Societal and Social Changes
after World War II Educational programs expanded as a result of postwar conditions. Veterans returning from the war took advantage of the ***GI Bill to attend colleges and trade schools. This provided a more educated and skilled work force that would, in turn, promote the economic and cultural growth of the postwar period. FDR signing into law the GI Bill
Societal and Social Changes after World War II ***The end of World War II and the Great Depression and the economic prosperity of the 1950s led to an explosion of the birthrate. The Baby Boom led to an increase in the number of school age children and placed a strain on the educational system so that new schools were needed. The Cold War intensified by the launch of Sputnik in 1957 resulted in an increased emphasis on quality education, especially in science and math.
Prosperity allowed young people to stay in school longer and many young women attended college. Suburbs Grow Returning veterans who married and began families needed more housing which spurred ***suburbanization. The baby boom of the late 1940s and 1950s also contributed to the growth of suburbia. ***The GI Bill made available federal loan
guarantees to veterans buying homes or starting new businesses. The wide availability of the automobile and highway expansion by the national government and the Eisenhower administration (Federal Defense Highway Act) accelerated the growth of suburbs. Shopping malls, motels, and fast food restaurants followed Population shifts Population shifts during and after World War II contributed to white flight from the cities and
also spurred suburbanization. As a result of the concentration of war industries in the Northeast and the west coast, many African Americans moved from the South during the war and continued to move in the 1950s and 1960s to escape poverty and racism. As middle and upper class people moved to the suburbs, so did jobs and businesses, leaving the cities with high unemployment, limited services and a shrinking tax base. This set the stage for the race riots of the 1960s.
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