Hard Times; an Oral History of the Great Depression Test | Final Test - Hard

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Final Test - Hard

Name: _________________________ Period: ___________________

This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What did the prison where Scoop Lankford was held in the 1930's try to feed the inmates at the worst times?

2. As described in The Farmer Is the Man, how did a mob respond to a judge who was foreclosing on homes in Iowa?

3. What happened to Orrin Kelly after the incident with the Iowa judge?

4. According to Scoop Lankford, when did conditions finally improve in the prison?

5. In the 1930's W. Clement Stone made his money selling what?

Essay Topics

A recurring question in Hard Times is how America would handle another Depression, were one to occur. Write an essay on this question. What experiences in the 1930's inform the interviewees who answer a question regarding America's ability to handle hard times? How close do these people think the US came to collapse? Do they, by and large, think that America is stronger or weaker as a system and culture now?

The federal government went through a series of processes in its attempt to react to the 1929 crash of the stock market and to stem the sinking of the national economy. Write an essay about these attempts at governmental assistance and how they did or did not succeed:

Part 1) How did the Hoover administration react in the immediate aftermath of Black Tuesday? Discuss what sort of governmental initiatives went into place, and whether the administration succeeded in stemming the decline or allaying fears in the general populace. What unrest cropped up at this time?

Part 2) Discuss the first steps taken by the Roosevelt administration upon its arrival into office. What, specifically, was the NRA? What powers did this administrative body offer Roosevelt to place limits on the private sector? Why was the NRA preemptively shut down soon after its creation?

Part 3) How did the Works Progress Administration prove to be more effective at stemming destitution than simple relief? What did this desire of Americans for work programs say about the country's work ethic? What were some material results of the WPA?

Among the strangest interviews in the book are those dedicated to the plight of farmers in the Midwest, in particular the sections regarding reactions to the price of corn. Write an essay about how the fluctuating price of corn led to massive wastes of foodstuffs. What did farmers do in an attempt to boost the price of corn? What other products did they turn to when the price of corn plummeted to absurdly low levels? What absurd and, later, sensible solutions did the United States government offer?

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