Hard Times: An Oral History of the Great Depression

Front Cover
The New Press, 1970 - History - 462 pages
4 Reviews
In this unique re-creation of one of the most dramatic periods in modern American history, Studs Terkel recaptures the Great Depression of the 1930s in all its complexity. The book is a mosaic of memories from those who were richest to those who were most destitute: politicians like James Farley and Raymond Moley; businessmen like Bill Benton and Clement Stone; a six-day bicycle racer; artists and writers; racketeers; speakeasy operators, strikers, and impoverished farmers; people who were just kids; and those who remember losing a fortune. Hard Times is not only a gold mine of information--much of it little known--but also a fascinating interplay of memory and fact, showing how the Depression affected the lives of those who experienced it firsthand, often transforming the most bitter memories into a surprising nostalgia.
 

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User Review  - kcshankd - LibraryThing

Oral history of the Great Depression. The 'common 'man' interviews are the best, but Terkel interviewed many politicians and government officials as well. Contains the only interview I've ever read ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - sammii507 - LibraryThing

All in all, this was a good book. I enjoyed reading the first hand accounts, and Terkel did a very good job of including all opinions (including some truly disgusting, racist ones). It really gives ... Read full review

Contents

A Personal Memoir and parenthetical comment
3
Jim Sheridan 13 Edward C Schalk
17
Lily Roy and Bucky 22 Tad
25
Ed Paulsen 29 Peggy Terry and Her Mother
45
Frank Czerwonka 35 Kiko Konagamitsu
51
Louis Banks 40 Fran
57
William Benton 60 Martin DeVries
74
MAN AND
82
CONCERNING THE NEW DEAL
249
Means 247 Joe Marcus
265
B Beanie Baldwin 254 David Kennedy
272
Wright Patman
282
SCARLET BANNERS AND NOVENAS
297
THE DOCTOR HUEY AND MR SMITH
314
Claude Williams
328
Christopher Lasch 338 Tom His Younger Son
343

Jane Yoder
84
Dynamite Garland
92
BONNIE LABORING
105
Evelyn Finn
112
THREE STRIKES
129
Edward A Ryerson
151
Mrs Winston Roberts
159
MEMBER OF THE CHORUS
165
Tony Soma
174
Dr Nathan Ackerman
195
Mary Owsley
201
Harry Terrell 213 Ruth Loriks His Wife
226
EDITOR AND PUBLISHER
236
100
348
MERELY PASSING THROUGH
353
A CABLE
359
Hiram Chub Sherman 3 63 Little Brother Montgomery
376
PUBLIC SERVANTTHE CITY
383
Elizabeth Wood 383 Sergeant Vincent Murray
391
EVICTIONS AR RESTS AND OTHER
397
Mrs Willye Jeffries 397 A Young Man From Detroit
411
Eileen Barth 419 Stanley Kell
427
STRIVE AND SUCCEED
441
17
452
EPILOGUE
459
Copyright

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About the author (1970)

Studs Terkel was an actor, writer, and radio host. He was born Louis Terkel on May 16, 1912 in New York City. He took his name from the James T. Farrell novel, Studs Lonigan. Terkel attended the University of Chicago and graduated with a law degree in 1934. Terkel acted in local stage productions and on radio dramas until he began one of the first television programs, an unscripted show called Studs Place in the early 1950s. In 1952, Terkel began Studs Terkel's Almanac on radio station WFMT in Chicago. Terkel compiled a series of books based on oral histories that defined America in the 20th Century. Working: People Talk About What They Do All Day and How They Feel About What They Do received a National Book Award nomination in 1975. The Good War: An Oral History of World War II won the Pulitzer Prize in nonfiction in 1985. Working was turned into a hit musical in 1978. Terkel was named the Communicator of the Year by the University of Chicago in 1969. He also won a Peabody Award for excellence in journalism in 1980 and the National Book Foundation Medal for contributions to American letters in 1997. He died on October 31, 2008 at the age of 96.

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