The Radio: Blessing or Curse? A 1929 Debate | National Humanities Center

America in Class Lessons

The Radio: Blessing or Curse? A 1929 Debate

Advisor: Binford, Henry (NHC Fellow, 1990–91)

By Wason, Marianne (NHC Assistant Director of Education Programs, Online Resources, 1997–2014)

Commercial radio broadcasting, a technological innovation in the 1920s, transformed American culture and politics. Whether those transformations were a boon or bane to society provoked as compelling a debate then as do the changes wrought by social media and the Internet today. The debate reflects the worry and hope with which Americans greeted new technologies in the 1920s.

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History / Technology / Education Studies / Radio / Popular Culture / American History / Mass Media / Primary Sources /