To assess understanding of the social and technological effects of electrification, students identify and analyze examples of each kind of change: new inventions, changes in work activity for women and men--both at home and in the workplace, uses of leisure time, and changes and continuity in values and beliefs.
The purpose of this activity is to validate student constructed generalizations about the process of electrification. Assign this activity at the start of the unit so students can gather their documentary materials as they do the various lessons.
- Students assemble a gallery of excerpts from documents in collections investigated in these lessons. Additional documentary material may come from other American Memory collections.
- Students create presentations.
- In a report to the class, students state their generalization and present their document selections, explaining and analyzing how these excerpts validate their generalization.
- Thomas Edison, while given credit for things he did not create, was a significant figure in the development of modern forms of entertainment.
- Electrification had significant social effects on women.
- Magazines played a significant role as educators of women in the development of the mass-consumer society.
- Americans sought to redefine their long held values in light of the changes in society.
- The social and technological changes of the period were a mixed blessing for women.
- The "New Woman" of the 1920s was a product of the changes brought about by electrification.