The Enduring Legacy of the WPA: When FDR Put the Nation to Work
Author(s): Nick Taylor
Original Publish Date: Mar 24, 2008
eAudio - unabridged
Audio (20.22 hours)
Product Number: Z10004637
Released: Mar 24, 2008
Business Term: Purchase
ISBN: #9781400126514
Narrator/s: James Boles
Publisher: Tantor Media, Inc
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When President Roosevelt took the oath of office in March 1933, he was facing a devastated nation. Four years into the Great Depression, a staggering 13 million American workers were jobless and many millions more of their family members were equally in need. Desperation ruled the land. What people wanted were jobs, not handouts-the pride of earning a paycheck. And in 1935, after a variety of temporary relief measures, a permanent nationwide jobs program was created. This was the Works Progress Administration (WPA), and it would forever change the physical landscape and the social policies of the United States. The WPA lasted for eight years, spent $11 billion, employed 8.5 million men and women, and gave the country not only a renewed spirit but a fresh face. Under its colorful head, Harry Hopkins, the agency's remarkable accomplishment was to combine the urgency of putting people back to work with its vision of physically rebuilding America. Its workers laid roads and erected dams, bridges, tunnels, and airports. They stocked rivers, made toys, sewed clothes, and served millions of hot school lunches. When disasters struck, they were there by the thousands to rescue the stranded. And all across the country the WPA's arts programs performed concerts, staged plays, painted murals, delighted children with circuses, and created invaluable guidebooks. Even today, more than sixty years after the WPA ceased to exist, there is almost no area in America that does not bear some visible mark of its presence. Politically controversial, the WPA was staffed by passionate believers and hated by conservatives; its critics called its projects make-work, and wags said WPA stood for "We Piddle Around." The contrary was true. We have only to look about us today to discover its lasting presence.

This title is part of (or scheduled to be part of) the following subscriptions:

RBdigital Unlimited Audio - Pub Library - US Collection
RBdigital Unlimited Audio - Pub Library - Canada Collection
RBdigital Unlimited Audio - Higher Ed - Curriculum - Platinum Collection

All formats/editions

Author(s): Nick Taylor
Product Number EB00149913
Released: Dec 27, 2013
Business Term: 2 Year
Publisher: Bantam
ISBN: #9780553904932

Professional reviews

"Narrator James Boles enlivens the story of the WPA's creation in 1935, its emphasis on employing the most people, the brilliant stewardship of Harry Hopkins, the scope of its projects--from the construction of the Timberline Lodge on Mt. Hood to the serving of hot school lunches--its detractors, and its ultimate replacement by the war industry. This history lesson is so fascinating that all that's required in audio is a friendly pace and clear diction. Boles gives this and more. You hear echoes of FDR and Churchill in quotes and genuine sympathy in the descriptions of the hardships of unemployment without a safety net. This would be a good title for the road (maybe WPA-built?) as listening in sections doesn't hurt the experience. J.B.G. (c) AudioFile 2008, Portland, Maine"