The Great Depression and Unemployment

Evaluate the key events and decisions surrounding the causes and consequences of the global depression of the 1930s and World War II.

7.1.1 The Twenties

Identify and explain the significance of the cultural changes and tensions in the “Roaring Twenties” including
  • cultural movements, such as the Harlem Renaissance and the “lost generation”
  • the struggle between “traditional” and “modern” America (e.g., Scopes Trial, immigration restrictions, Prohibition, role of women, mass consumption)

7.1.2 Causes and Consequences of the Great Depression

Explain and evaluate the multiple causes and consequences of the Great Depression by analyzing
  • the political, economic, environmental, and social causes of the Great Depression including fiscal policy, overproduction, under consumption, and speculation, the 1929 crash, and the Dust Bowl
  • the economic and social toll of the Great Depression, including unemployment and environmental conditions that affected farmers, industrial workers and families
  • Hoover’s policies and their impact (e.g., Reconstruction Finance Corporation)

7.1.3 The New Deal

Explain and evaluate Roosevelt’s New Deal Policies including
  • expanding the federal government’s responsibilities to protect the environment (e.g., Dust Bowl and the Tennessee Valley), meet challenges of unemployment, address the needs of workers, farmers, poor, and elderly
  • opposition to the New Deal and the impact of the Supreme Court in striking down and then accepting New Deal laws
  • consequences of New Deal policies (e.g., promoting workers’ rights, development of Social Security program, and banking and financial regulation conservation practices, crop subsidies)


Expectations 7.1.2 and 7.1.3 will be assessed together. This is logical considering the Great Depression as a whole from start to finish. Students are asked to "explain and evaluate the multiple causes and consequences of the Great Depression and Roosevelt's New Deal policies".

The assessment must therefore consist of three elements:
  1. A description of one significant problem, issue, or factor of the depression (poverty, unemployment, banking crisis, Dust Bowl, industrial stagnation)
  2. A description of the solutions that FDR created/proposed that were intended to combat the Great Depression.
  3. An evaluation on the success of the New Deal programs