Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Katherine Williams: The Flapper Era

Katherine Williams 321004341

The Flapper Era

The Flapper Era began during World War I.  Liberal beliefs were forming, sparking a new age of living free, dressing provocative and drinking excessively. A flapper girl is defined as a "the tough-talking party girl with bobbed hair, a spangled headband and a shocking disdain for propriety" (Dangerous 1). The name derived from the idea of young women spreading their wings learning how to take flight. Other theories suggest that the title came from pigtailed girls with their hair flapping on their back. Flapper girls originally had a derogatory reputation in society as being a prostitute, but eventually the name evolved to describe a lively young teenager. However, flapper girls did have a reputation for fast living. The Flapper Era was a time that "inaugurated a revolutionary change in sexual manners and morals still constitutes an enduring stereotypes and a "new freedom" for the American girl" (McGovern 1).  They were independent young women who traveled to jazz clubs at night where they would dance provocatively, smoke cigarettes and date indefinitely. One of the main differences of these women is their consumption of alcohol during the Prohibition. Here is a video that gives an accurate representation of these flapper girls in their element:

The Prohibition created a culture that would force society to drink in secret. People would go to a Speakeasy to drink and dance to jazz. Flapper girls would particular favor this synchronized music of the "Jazz Age". This music was mostly accredited to African American culture and traditions. The 1920's youth was highly influenced by this style that encouraged rebellion. With this new music came new moves. Dances such as the "Charleston" and the "Turkey Trot" as well as the tango and slow waltz became popular. Examples of the dances are below:

The Flapper Era, however, did not survive the Wall Street Crash of 1929 and quickly ended due to The Great Depression. This time of scandalous dressing and luxurious living came to a close and the hard knox were under way.

Works Cited 
"Dance in the Jazz Age." Dance in the Jazz Age. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Nov. 2012. <http://socialdance.stanford.edu/syllabi/jazz_age.htm>. 
"Dangerous And Funny: She's Still A Flapper." Review. (n.d.): n. pag. Academic Search Complete. Web. 18 Nov. 2012. <http:/http://lib-ezproxy.tamu.edu:2048/login?url=http://search.proquest.com/docview/1015212891?accountid=7082>. 
McGovern, James R. "The American Woman: Pre-World War I Manners and Freedom." Journal of American History (n.d.): n. pag. Web. 19 Nov. 2012. 
YouTube. Dir. Aaron1912. YouTube. YouTube, 06 Nov. 2008. Web. 19 Nov. 2012. <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5DMTWCSU5a8>. 

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