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America Compared: The Great Depression
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America Compared: The Great Depression

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  • 1. America Compared: The Great Depression
    Summer Clark
  • 2. Economic Abyss
    On "Black Tuesday", October 29, 1929, the New York stock market began a tumble that lowered stock prices by almost half within three weeks. Western Europe's crushing debt from World War I, agricultural overproduction in the 1920's, the reluctance of the United States to take over Britain's role as the world's banker, and the wrong-headed nationalistic economic policies that many countries pursued helped contribute to a world catastrophe in the making. Between 1929 and 1933, over eleven thousand American banks failed; national production was cut in half; and thirteen million people were put out of work.
  • 3. Roosevelt and Hitler
    Franklin Roosevelt and Adolf Hitler came to power at almost precisely the same time, following inept and unpopular predecessors. Both leaders combined deficit spending on modern improvements with an old-fashioned idealization of rural life. They began by advocating a form of "corporatism", or government-supervised cooperation between business and labor. In the end, neither Roosevelt nor Hitler solved the riddle of the Great Depression, although Hitler was more successful at restoring full employment.

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