Consumerism mushroomed as Americans had more disposable income -- Americans bought cars, gadgets for their homes, vacations, etc. in unprecedented numbers
3. Middle class
a. 5.7 in 1947; over 12 million by early 1960s
b. Suburbs i. Grew 6X faster than cities in 1950s.
ii. Resulted from increased car production, white flight from urban areas due to black migration into Northern and Midwestern cities, and gov’t policies that insured both builders and homeowners.
c. Cult of domesticity re-emerges i. A few advocated that science supported the idea that women could only find fulfillment as a homemaker.
ii. The concept of a woman’s place being in the home was widespread in magazines, TV, and society in general.
iii. Dr. Benjamin Spock: The Commonsense Book of Baby and Child Care -- Sold an average of 1 million copies per year between 1946 and 1960.
-- Message: Women’s primary responsibility was to stay home and nurture their children. -- Also, parents should trust themselves as they attend to their children’s physical and psychological needs.
D. Sunbelt vs. Frostbelt(or Rustbelt)
1. Sunbelt is a 15-state area stretching from Virginia through Florida and Texas to Arizona and California (includes all former Confederate states)
2. Advent of air-conditioning spurred enormous growth a. Population increase twice that of the old industrial zones of the Northeast.
b. California which became most populous state by 1963.
3. War industries and high-tech industries attracted millions to the west coast.
4. Aerospace industry and huge military installations attracted millions to Texas and Florida.
5. Traditional Midwest industrial workers lost ground as many of their jobs were shipped overseas.
6. "Rustbelt" states of the Ohio Valley angered at federal outlays for Southern and Western states
7. Every president elected since 1964 has come from the Sunbelt.
8. Sunbelt’s representation in Congress has increased significantly.