The Jazz Age – The 20s Our American Century

By Time-Life Books



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America in the early ’20s stood on the verge of a bracing new age. The trauma of the First World War had passed. A fresh face was in the White House. And in speakeasies and nightclubs across the land–officially dry since January 1920, when Prohibition took effect–an innovative style of music was in the air.

Carried north from New Orleans by charismatic black artists such as King Oliver and Louis Armstrong, the new sound was as hot as the forbidden liquor was cool. And to Americans tired of war abroad and failed reforms at home, jazz was just what the doctor ordered.

Crowding into gin mills and dance halls in huge numbers to swing to the new rhythms, sip some hooch, and make a little whoopee, the revelers set the tone for the decade and lent it its name.

The Jazz Age tells their story–and the story of the gangsters and bootleggers, writers and silver-screen idols, sports stars and pole sitters who made the ’20s an age of glittering celebrity. Meet the Chicago kingpin who grew famous–and feared–as Scarface. Look into the eyes of the Hollywood lover termed “catnip to women.” And remember the baseball titan who slugged 60 homers in a single season, leaving no doubt that he was the Sultan of Swat.

Let the The Jazz Age take you on the roller-coaster that was the ’20s, when American aviator Charles Lindbergh becomes the first to fly across the Atlantic alone without stopping. When F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote his famous first novel. And when easy credit terms and a new, sophisticated style of advertising drove consumers to spend and invest beyond their means, leaving millions of Americans with a major hangover after the stock market crash of 1929.

The editors of Time-Life Books searched far and wide to paint a comprehensive portrait of the Jazz Age. In addition to turning the archives of Times and Life magazines upside down, they combed through antique stores, libraries, and historical societies as well as museums and private collections. The resulting book, enlivened by vivid photographs and incisive commentary, is the ultimate chronicle of the ’20s, a decade when it seemed the swell times would never end.

Category: Genre: History, Non-Fiction sku: 0783555091

Additional information

Weight 36.13 oz
Dimensions 11.25 × 9 × .75 in