Sights Sounds And The Liquid That Drowns

Sights, Sounds And The Liquid That Drowns Essay, Research Paper



Andrew Rollins

Entertainment, is it the answer? In today s society when we are bored we have countless forms of entertainment. You name it we have it, T.V., cinema, radio, computers, video games, dance clubs, all in there full technological swing. The entertainment situation in the 1920 s was a different picture. Many of these medians were just coming about, while some not to come for years. The affect that radio and cinema had on society in the twenties was enormous. In a time were entertainment was in dire need, cinema and radio was there. Along with all this prosperity in the search for a good time was the set back of Prohibition. In theory it was a good idea but when it was put into law it made more trouble than anyone could have ever expected. So, just what was the effect of cinema, radio and prohibition in the 20 s. I maybe wrong but radio and cinema was a good idea but prohibition , in a word “doohh!”

It s the 1920 s, the war is over, things are looking good, the country is in a prosperous swing, everyone has a little bit of money in their pocket what a better time to put a big push on motion pictures. A form of technology that had been around since the turn of the century, sort of laid dormant and took a rest during war times. Once the big push was put on cinema it became a huge business overnight with wise minded entrepreneurs taking advantage of a nation in need of entertainment. Hollywood quickly became the self appointed cinema capitol of the world. The effect that cinema had on this society that was starving for a way to enjoy themselves. Soon the cinema became a way of life. It was an escape from the everyday problems that still were hanging over from the war, even though thing were looking prosperous there were still men and women out of work, there was uncertainty amongst some about the stability of the post-war economy the was also the ever present political crises that slowly kept growing and growing. It wasn t long before multiple types of movies started to hit the screen. Most took of and where accepted but there were some that society found risqu , those movies that had adult content were soon banned as they were deemed unacceptable. Comedy based movies became a favorite as society wasn t worried about the deep thought-intelectual-make-you-cry-when-they-kill-old-yeller type of movies that grip audiences in today s society. Nope, all they wanted to see was guy get beaned over the head with a mallet then fall in to the river that flowed over a cliff. All society wanted to do was laugh. Pioneers of laughter such as Charlie Chaplin captivated audiences with his baggy trousers, battered hat and comical use of his trusty cane. It kept people from focusing on more serious issues in the world, heck who cared it was funny, right. With the introduction of “talkies” and the development of western movies, new hope was given to society. As in today s society most everyone believes what they see, read, and hear. With the development of Westerns were the good guy wore white, the bad guys cloaked in black and of coarse as we all know to well in the movies the good guy always win. Not once will you see Zoro flailing his sword, cut his foot, fall to the ground and start crying like a baby when his trusty steed comes and steps on his head(why are we so sheltered). Soon society was totally taken in by this false sense of security. This was one of the bad points of cinema. In Nazi Germany this median was use to promoted Nazi propaganda. In many case the use of the wide spread median was successful . Depending on you views of the world, the affect of the introduction of the cinema varies. In my opinion it was a good thing as we have learn to love many of the big screen characters it is also a way for us to experience new technologies first hand as they marvel us. As we sip our Pepsi(A registered trademark of the Pepsi-Cola company) and stuff our faces with popcorn and skittles, man could life get any better.

Well we have a way to visually simulate ourselves, how about those funny-looking things on the side of our head? We should be able to fill them with something, how about mellow sound and voices from afar I got it how a about the radio.

The radio and the sound it brought with it soon became as popular as the cinema as it had a relatively similar full fledge introduction to society in the 20 s . In 1920, Lord Northcliffe from England sponsored the first public broadcast. Australian opera star Nellie Melba s voice was broadcast all over Europe. Societies big wig corporate guru s were very impressed and from here on commercially sponsored programs were born. The ability to give people the entertainment they desire and at the same time plugging your business was a move that would change advertising as we know it. That type of thing has seen a resurge in our society(Friends brought to you by Frosted Cherios and Cool Ranch Doritios) The radio gave people and business men alike a tool that when needed could reach far across the country. By the 1930 s almost every home in the united States and Canada would have some sort of radio reception device. The possibilities were endless. The radio catered to the same audience as the cinema , plays , comedy and soap opera, but the type of broadcast that surpassed them all in popularity was sports broadcast. The radio gave the common sportsfan a way to hear the game and cheer for the favorite team and player. The median just enlarged societies way of thinking that the good guys always won and with the advent of sports hero soon everyone had a hero or idol if will that they looked up to and aspired to be. The radio gave the same sort of escapism that the cinema give. The affect it had on society was a good one for the most part but as with everything in life there is always a catch. Just as business men seen the power of radio so did political leaders on both sides of the Ocean. Just as they did with foreign cinema . Hitler took over the airway to spread hidden Nazi propaganda. Though his text made very little sense, loyal German would stop everything they were doing to listen to Hitler s hypnotic voice. Other foreign leaders that took advantage of the radio was Italy s Mussolini, he to was very successful with the use of the radio. On this side of the ocean President Franklin Roosevelt used the radio to send his grandfather-in-front-of-the-fireplace-type-chats to reach a very large and receptive audience. The radio was entertaining, a tool and in some cases could be considered a weapon as all forms of media are considered. The total impact of the radio was one of good nature. The affects it had on society in the twenties was huge as they previously had nothing like this now they could enjoy a ball game in the comfort of their home. The effects of the radio will be everlasting in our society and societies to come.

Ahh, prohibition what a plan they had to abolish and ban all alcohol beverages. Good idea keep the evil stuff away from kids, sober up drunks, stop alcohol related accidents. Just turn the taps off and close the breweries, simple enough , or was it. What seemed to the picture perfect way to good health and social order soon backfired. I m talking 383 Cuda backfire. This plan of social sobriety blew up in their faces. The advent of taking all alcohol off the shelves lead to the underground-black-market production of almost poisonous moonshine. This moonshine was deadly even in it s weakest forms. Prohibition was the main cause for the forming of the Mob. As they controlled most all trafficking of all illegal alcohol that they were smuggling in from other countries. The affect the prohibition had on societies was devastating. People went looking for a buzz anywhere they could find it. This also lead to the wide spread use of drugs. When society seen the affect the prohibition was having on society and the realization that people were going to get alcohol if they wanted it bad enough. With the pulling of prohibition, people were once again allowed to buy legal alcohol. By this time it was to late to stop the mob and underground brewers of moonshine. It just goes to show that no matter how something looks on paper, it can have an adverse affect in reality. In my opinion prohibition was just a bad idea. The taking away of ones alcohol is just wrong I tell ya, just wrong. The rise of the mob probably would have come sooner or later but you never now it may have never came at all. The continuing effects of prohibition are those that will leave a bad after taste in our society forever.

All in all society in the 1920 s were subjected to many new things and prosperous forms of entertainment. Cinema and radio made a big impression then and they still do today. If not for these medians we could be sitting here trying to poke our eyes out with rotten unpeeled bananas, who knows were we would be. My point is that the effects that the two forms of entertainment then could only be labeled as stupendous. We take for granted the entertainment resources we have available to us. So to them this would be like seeing the Arc stop at your door during the floods.(it was a good thing). As with all good things, there is a bad. Prohibition(badbadbadbadbadbadbad) left a black mark on society in many ways. Hey no ones perfect. The affects of Radio and Cinema seem to overshadow the bad of prohibition. All I can say is I don t know were I would be without “The Simpsons”(registered trademark of Matt Goening). I believe our society would be lost with out these powerful medians and where would Bancroft be without the Hotel. I rest my case.



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