New Deal

The New Deal era (1933–39) witnessed a major shift in government control of labor and social policies, with the federal government taking over many responsibilities that were formerly controlled by the individual states. A similar change occurred in the definition of citizenship rights and government responsibilities for providing individual economic security. Growing from conventional notions of men as productive workers and women as providers of child care, New Deal policies protected traditional work- and family-based ideals of masculinity. They reinforced prevailing gender norms despite President Franklin D. Roosevelt's appointment of the first woman to the Cabinet (Frances Perkins as secretary of labor), the presence an unprecedented number of women in administrative posts, and First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt's social activism.

Prior to the 1930s, government and societal ...

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