Free Essay

Honorable Style in Dishonorable Times: American Gangsters of the 1920s and 1930s

In: Historical Events

Submitted By clarechin
Words 6179
Pages 25
Beshears, Laura: Honorable Style in Dishonorable Times: American Gangsters of the 1920s and 1930s
Journal of American Culture (33:3) [Sep 2010] , p.197-206.

Honorable Style in Dishonorable Times: American Gangsters of the 1920s and 1930s
Laura Beshears. The Journal of American Culture. Malden: Sep 2010. Vol. 33, Iss. 3; pg. 197, 10 pgs
Abstract (Summary)
Prohibition, which came into effect in July of 1920 with the passing of the Eighteenth Amendment, also illustrated the progressives' idealism, as many believed that the elimination of alcohol, because it allegedly created "poverty, marital distress, and negligence," would cleanse society (Mordden 141). [...] the birth of the radio and the movies as well as the development of flight induced excitement and fostered a vision of a society engaged in perpetual technological advancement (Mordden 47). [...] Horatio Alger, Jr. and his late nineteenth-century books- portraits of men who, born underprivileged, rose to wealth and success through hard work, honesty, self-confidence, commitment, and a bit of luck (Weiss 53-54) - characterized the progressive spirit, as it encouraged people to work hard for a better future and for the fulfillment of the American dream.
Full Text (5892 words)
Copyright Blackwell Publishing Ltd. Sep 2010

"You don't need to be ordering fancy duds," Frankie Rio advised his boss as a tailor took measurements of Capone's swollen physique at the Lexington Hotel. "You're going to prison. Why don't you have a suit made with stripes on it?"
"The hell I am," Al shot back. "I'm going back to Florida for a nice long rest, and I need some new clothes before I go." In this irrationally jaunty mood, he ordered two new lightweight suits and made plans for an extended stay at his Palm Island hacienda.
(Bergreen 485)
This excerpt from Laurence Bergreen's biography of Al Capone informs the reader of the gangster's criminality and potential jail time, but it also says much about the lifestyle of this infamous crook. Planning a tranquil retreat in Florida while being fitted for a made-to-measure suit in a highend hotel, Capone appeared to be a man who lived a life of wealth and leisure and who chose to flaunt his affluence through an expensive wardrobe. However, that he preferred stylish clothing as a means to indicate his financial success was not an unusual practice among mobsters. Rather, "stylish consumption defined the public enemy" (Ruth 63), and the image of the Prohibition-era gangster, rising through the criminal ranks in his three-piece suit, fedora, tie, overcoat, and polished shoes, has become ingrained in the collective American conscious. These hip fashions not only reflected the mood of urban America in the 1920s and early 1930s but also expressed gangsters' anxieties and ambitions as they staked out their place in the country's newly formed metropolitan society.
Similar to the flappers' short and unshapely dress, which signaled the newfound liberation of many women in the 1920s, the gangsters' fashions echoed the historical forces at play in the early twentieth century. Their attire spoke to the rampant growth of organized crime in major American cities during the Jazz Age. Much of this crime hinged on the passing of Prohibition in 1920, and many gangsters made good money from bootlegging and racketeering for over a decade, as Prohibition was not repealed until 1933. The gangsters' business-like garb reflected their aim to legitimize their status as businessmen, marked their rise from destitute pasts to wealth, and positioned them as a model of the new American ideal for the urban working class. At the same time, other elements of gangster dress, combined with the mobsters' extreme materialistic consumption and penchant for ostentation, unveiled their illicit activities and exposed them as imposters and corrupters of the American dream.
Al Capone, who became one of the most notorious crime lords of the 1920s and 1930s, epitomized the Prohibition-era gangster figure. Typically dressed in pinstripe suits, fedoras, and fancy neckties, he served as a model of underworld fashion. Like Capone, many well known criminals of the time wore sharp suits, hats, and accessories. Other signature items of gangster fashion included overcoats, spectator shoes, watch fobs, and jewelry. The multitude of photographs and historical documents that depict gangsters sporting these styles supports the notion that fashionable, yet flashy, business-like apparel served as typical gangster garb. While these sartorial elements portrayed gangsters as formally, though sometimes ostentatiously, dressed, gangsters' style carries greater significance when examined within its historical context.
The 1920s witnessed a major shift in American urban life and culture. This era saw optimism and the possibility of a better American society transform into deflated hopes and disillusionment, and gangster attire simultaneously represented both ends of this spectrum. Widespread feelings of idealism had materialized before the turn of the century with the rapid industrialization and urbanization of America (Dumenil 16). Opinions on how to improve society varied, but citizens with optimistic attitudes were united in their general belief that society could and would progress (Goldberg 1). These hopeful people were appropriately dubbed progressives, and they held an undeniably strong sway in American society (Goldberg 1). The insistence of some progressives, wary of the excessive power of business trusts, steered the government to pass the Sherman Anti-Trust Act in 1890 (Goldberg 4). Other progressives sought to better society by addressing issues of poverty, child labor, women's rights, or racial inequality (Goldberg 2, 4-5). The release of one progressive text, Upton Sinclair's The Jungle, created such a powerful reaction that it resulted in the government creating the Meat Inspection Act (Goldberg 2). Prohibition, which came into effect in July of 1920 with the passing of the Eighteenth Amendment, also illustrated the progressives' idealism, as many believed that the elimination of alcohol, because it allegedly created "poverty, marital distress, and negligence," would cleanse society (Mordden 141). Moreover, the birth of the radio and the movies as well as the development of flight induced excitement and fostered a vision of a society engaged in perpetual technological advancement (Mordden 47). The automobile industry became an important economic force, and Henry Ford and his massproduced, assembly-line-constructed automobile resonated with this same positive sentiment (Mordden 49). Progressives felt so determined that even World War I failed to completely dampen their faith in society's ability to improve itself, as many felt confident that President Woodrow Wilson would see the war's end as a chance to deal with the range of domestic issues that progressives were fighting so hard to solve (Goldberg 40). Finally, Horatio Alger, Jr. and his late nineteenth-century books- portraits of men who, born underprivileged, rose to wealth and success through hard work, honesty, self-confidence, commitment, and a bit of luck (Weiss 53-54) - characterized the progressive spirit, as it encouraged people to work hard for a better future and for the fulfillment of the American dream.
The idealistic tone set by the progressives lasted well into the twentieth century, but hope began to fade in the 1920s, with a more jaded American sentiment rising to the surface. Rather than focusing on problems at home, President Wilson traveled to Paris and concentrated his efforts on spreading peace and democracy to the world (Goldberg 41). The public, turning its attention to issues such as laborers who went on strikes at increasing rates and radicals who sent packaged bombs to government officials, soon gave precedence to preventing a Bolshevist revolution over curing society's other ills (Allen 39-42). Americans and the US government became so fearful of radicals and intolerant of dissidents that they began to step on the very liberties that progressives had struggled to secure (Goldberg 41). A major shift in morals further pushed society away from progressivism and toward a nihilistic outlook on life. The younger generation, having "been infected by the eatdrink-and-be-merry-for-tomorrow-we-die spirit which accompanied the departure of the soldiers to the training camps and the fighting front," refused to accept the moral code that older generations had followed in their youth (Allen 78). The length of women's skirts and hair became shorter and shorter. Women began not only to smoke but also to smoke and drink with men (Allen 90-91). Sex became an obsession in public discourse. Many young Americans rejected the old notion of sex as a treasured act of love. A previously private matter, the subject of sex even became a popular topic of casual conversation (Allen 97-98). A growing wariness of religion also intensified the sense of triviality that people began to feel about life. Even though countless churches continued to serve their devout followers, an increasing number of people questioned religion and wondered whether it actually held the answers to life's mysteries (Allen 163). The Scopes case of 1 925, in which John Thomas Scopes was put on trial for teaching the theory of evolution in his classroom, demonstrated that not everyone had blind faith in religion (Allen 167-71). Although this breakdown of the old moral order continued into the 1920s, it did not result in the creation of a new one (Allen 99-100). Consequently, without strong ethical standards on which to base their actions and without meaning with which to fill their lives, many Americans became nihilistic.
This nihilism set the scene for crime and corruption to emerge, and American citizens could not ignore it. Gangsters took control of cities with coercion and violence. They had never before committed certain crimes, namely racketeering, as frequently as they did in the 1920s (Allen 221). The impressions that "Chicago was afflicted with such an epidemic of killings as no civilized modern city had ever before seen" and that "a new technique of wholesale murder was developed" make clear that the morality of certain circles in America had collapsed (Allen 216-17). Gangsters had never functioned on such a major scale, and the boundary between the "underworld" and the "upperworld" became blurred (Fox 11).
The corruption that overtook society existed not only in gangs living outside the law but also in public institutions. Even the U.S. President Warren G. Harding, from 1921 to 1923, and his administration played a role in this corruption. Harding appointed "cronies and crooks" from his home state of Ohio to office (Mordden 42). These men, friends of Harding who comprised the socalled "Ohio Gang," used their power to benefit themselves (Sann, The Lawless Decade 53). For example, in what became known as the Teapot Dome Scandal, Harding's Secretary of the Interior Albert B. Fall secretly sold government-owned oil reserves to oil companies that had bribed him with Liberty Bonds and cash (Allen 113-15). Gangsters thrived in this environment of pervasive corruption, moral decay, and lawlessness.
Embedded in this historical background, gangsters seized the optimistic disposition of the early twentieth century and distorted it. Usually originating from poor Irish, Italian, Jewish, or Polish immigrant families and faced with few legitimate economic opportunities in mainstream America, gangsters appropriated Alger's rags-to-riches ideal, and the public took notice. The title of a Chicago Daily Tribune article "U.S. Uncovers True Story of Capone 's Rise: Humble Buyer of Beer Trucks 10 Years Ago" suggests that the media portrayed Capone as an Alger character, a man from modest beginnings who made something of himself (2). Fred Pasley, a newspaper reporter for the Chicago Daily Tribune (Bergreen 319), also drew a comparison between Al Capone and "other exemplary urban success stories . . . when he subtitled his successful Capone book The Biography of a Self-Made Man" (Ruth 120). Americans reading these stories most likely saw gangsters in the same way, especially since tales of their ascendance to greatness, like the Chicago Daily Tribune article, continued to excite public interest in the 1920s. With titles like "A Winner Never Quits and a Quitter Never Wins," stories about success that was attained through hard work captured American attention (Landwehr 16). The abundance of articles with similar themes, such as "Good Salesmen are MadeNot Born" and "Station Agent at Thirty-Six Vice President at Forty," in popular magazines at the time makes it evident that these reports of selfmade men still appealed to Americans as they did during the progressive era (Nash 16; Pittman 16). However, even though the public may have perceived them as Alger-type protagonists, gangsters actually co-opted the markings of the idealistic progressive spirit for nefarious purposes. Automobiles, while also revolutionizing transportation, enabled gangsters to escape quickly from the scene of a crime. Drive-by shootings soon became the new and preferred way to eliminate competition (Yablonsky 30). Prohibition, supposedly created to prevent drinking, presented gangsters with an opportunity to profit from illegal bootlegging. Gangsters undermined the dream of rising to wealth through honest work; they made their money through illegitimate and illegal practices and usurped power through violence. In this way, their lives paralleled the transition that occurred in America from idealism to the corruption of that idealism. The elements of the gangsters' style simultaneously embodied this transition. Although countless sources on Prohibition-era gangsters reference their clothing and make note of their keen fashion sense, gangsters' dress actually reflected this specific societal tension between optimism and disenchantment.
Certain elements of gangster dress became emblems that echoed the progressives' positive outlook and allowed mobsters to assume the role of respectable and legitimate businessmen. The best example is the suit, which first appeared in its most primitive form in the seventeenth century in both the English court of Charles II and the French court of Louis XIV and which developed through the centuries, though it maintained its essential form. It still served as common attire for men into the twentieth century (Laver 112-16). At this time, the "lounge-suit" was the specific type of suit that men typically wore, according to dress historian Anne Hollander (110). Made of only one fabric, the lounge suit became the "allpurpose formal costume for men" in the twentieth century, Hollander notes, indicating that it was not casual and that not every man wore it on a daily basis (109-10). However, businesses adopted the suit as daily wear, and it came to exude a sense of professionalism. Gangsters appropriated the suit in an effort to gain the good reputation that they desired. As stated by Al Capone biographer Laurence Bergreen, Capone strived to earn "the respectability he craved" (236). Famous fighter Jack Dempsey even remarked that his fan and friend Al "wanted to be accepted as a man, not a racketeer" (qtd. in Bergreen 233). Author Gary Levine ascribes similar aspirations to the bootlegger Jack "Legs" Diamond: "If there was anything that he wanted most, it was to improve his social status and to be accepted into respectable society" (38). Suits granted gangsters the validation for which they yearned. Arthur B. Reeve makes this apparent in his 1931 book The Golden Age of Crime when he points out how the right clothes improved Jack Diamond's image. Assessing a mug shot of Diamond, Reeve finds the grimaced and disheveled crook "bereft of well tailored clothes and needed razor" (80-81). On the other hand, in describing a photograph of Diamond in a sleek pinstripe suit, with a pocket square peeking out of his left breast pocket and a slick hat resting atop his head, Reeve claims that "Jack 'Legs' Diamond shines" as "the famous racketeer in the pose of a big business man" (80-81). Parading around as decent-looking businessmen, gangsters like Diamond imparted the impression of legitimized success to the American public and, in this way, commanded respect.
By cloaking themselves in these professional uniforms, gangsters also demonstrated that they regarded crime as a legitimate business (Ruth 4043). In reality, crime was becoming an occupation of sorts. Gangs, exchanging "economic motives and business technique for the old adventure interests and swashbuckling methods," became organized (Thrasher 422). Interestingly, many people credited Capone's success in crime to "being as ruthless as anyone else in it, while being far better organized" (Perrett 402). The title of a New York Times article from 1926, "Crime Gangs Organized as Big Business" reveals that even the public acknowledged that gangsters managed themselves as businesses and utilized business methods (Young XX5). A source from 1931 reinforces this public opinion when the author claims, "The fact is a new type of racketeer is in the making. He is more or less like the man of big business who would not take on a new sales manager or a new wife except under competent legal advice" (Reeve 11-12). Crime became as organized and structured as most legal businesses in the 1920s because gangsters took their economic role to be the provision of goods and services that society demanded, even though supplying those goods and services was against the law (Allsop 242). Capone considered himself an entrepreneur, and he made clear his attitude toward his line of work when he stated,
If I break the law, my customers, who number hundreds of the best people in Chicago, are as guilty as I am. The only difference is [sic] between us is that I sell and they buy. Everybody calls me a racketeer. I call myself a business man. When I sell liquor, it's bootlegging. When my patron serves it on a silver tray on Lake Shore Drive, it's hospitality.
(qtd. in Hill 69)
In essence, Capone spoke the truth. Considering that people "from every level of society frequented these speakeasies," he sold Americans what they wanted (Katz 52). Wearing business-like attire, gangsters gave the illusion that their work was just as valid a career as any other. A photograph of "Machine Gun" Jack McGurn, a gunman of Capone, and his wife (Figure 1) portrays the gangster's aim to legitimize himself as a reputable businessman. McGurn, "a spiffy dresser in the style of actor George Raft," wears the suit, holding a fedora in his hands with an overcoat resting on his arm (Helmer and Mattix 199). His clean, crisp, and dapper look makes him appear distinguished. Dressed as professionals, McGurn and his contemporaries would have fooled the public into seeing them as such, just as their boss Capone's "smoothness and his air of civility made the rackets seem as legitimate as any other business, an avenue to self-respect" (Bergreen 102). What imbued Capone with this smoothness and air of civility? It was the clothes on his back, most likely. By wearing suits, gangsters cast themselves as professionals in a world where illegal actions were simply a part of a job rather than a form of criminality.
Just as the suit reflected a gangster's desire for recognition as a respectable and legitimate businessman, the manner in which a gangster embellished his suit exhibited his attainment of material wealth, another feat in keeping with the Alger ideal of success through hard work. For example, Big Jim Colosimo adorned his ordinary suit by adding diamonds to "his tiepin, his studs, his suspenders and belts, his watch fob, and even ... his garters" (Sann, The Lawless Decade 37). Capone enriched his style by wearing the suit but altering its traditional colors; his bright lime green suits, brilliantly colored silk ties, and white hat allowed him to stand out in a crowd. Even in black-andwhite photographs, his showy fashion sense was apparent. Appearing on the cover of the March 24th issue of Time Magazine from 1930, for instance, Capone displayed his flare with a polka dot necktie and a rose in his lapel. One could also spot his particular group of gangsters because they wore strips of black silk around the circumference of their gray fedoras (Perrett 395). Jack Diamond had the type of wardrobe that drew attention to his material success as well. According to his biographer, he "was difficult to miss. He was the snappiest dressed gangster of the period and easily spotted in his custom-fitted dark suits, flashy ties, and black and white checkered cap" (Levine 79). Gangsters had expensive taste, and it gave them an air of affluence. The professional aspect of their style hinted that these gangsters obtained their expensive clothes through their work as businessmen, and their success at their job allowed them to live comfortably. Forging their way to the top through hard work, even though it was criminal, gangsters ironically achieved the American dream: success and wealth through effort and persistence.
The growth of male consumerism in America during the 1920s suggests that many contemporaries bought into the fashionable façade of gangster attire. Despite traditional beliefs that men functioned as "producers," American men were in fact consumers (Swiencicki 773-74). David Cohn notes that men of the Industrial Revolution found themselves too preoccupied with developing cities to put great effort into personal appearance and the careful crafting of their wardrobes (469). He writes, "From 1900 to 1920," however, "men dressed far better than they did in the latter half of the nineteenth century, while their clothes were evidence not only of prosperity but also of the healthy vanity of the preening male" (469). As evidenced by male-oriented advertisements, men did indeed begin to pay attention to style. "In the affairs of American gentlemen, business and social alike," reads an advertisement for Adler-Rochester Clothes in the October 1920 issue oí American Magazine, "the selection of correct clothing is constantly assuming a more important role. And rightly so. Discrimination here, as in other matters, is a sure index to character and taste" (221). Clothes had become something much greater than the mere material of which they were made. Other advertisements contained similar messages. "Open the door to your own personality," advised ED. V Price & Co. in an issue of American Magazine from March 1921. "Let the clothes you wear properly express your self to others. There is a right style- a combination of the right fashion and the right fabric- to fit your personality as well as your person" (117). The Florsheim Shoe Company claimed, "The reputation and wellmannered style of Florsheim Shoes have a special appeal to the man whose standing commands respect in any company" (Saturday Evening Post 137). What a man wore became a statement, and clothes became a testament to the nature of the man dressed in them. As Orison Swett Marden wrote in the March 1918 issue of New Success:
Your personal appearance, your dress, your manner, everything about you, the way in which you keep yourself groomed, how you carry yourself, what you say, ... all these things are to you what the show windows of a merchant's store are to his business, the way he advertises and displays his goods. Your appearance will be taken as an advertisement of what you are. It is constantly telling people whether you are a success or a failure.
(qtd. in Pendergast 123)
Moreover, the concept that it was "part of the success tradition to boast that one's clothes are expensive and bear the labels of fashionable clothiers" reveals that men in the early twentieth century saw pricey and stylish clothes as signifiers of wealth and status (Cohn 468). Observing mobsters like Colosimo or Capone in high-class garb, contemporaries would have seen this type of clothing in the same way gangsters saw it- a symbol of achievement. This insinuates that gangster apparel had, in effect, fooled the public into thinking gangsters had actually attained success.
At the same time, the growth of mass production and ready-to-wear allowed the public to acquire the symbols of success displayed by the gangsters. Although the ready-to-wear business had existed since the early 1800s, it was not until the very end of the nineteenth century that the mass-produced fashions were socially accepted (Schorman 22). Into the 1920s, popular styles became increasingly available to the masses (Joselit 3). New forms of distribution, such as the department store, also helped to make fashion more available to the public (Green 22). With the latest trends accessible to anyone, it proved difficult for one to find an excuse to be out of fashion. Everyone began to pay even greater attention to what was in style because "[t]o be in fashion . . . was to be right on top [of the world]" (Joselit 8). Interestingly, clothing itself became a representation of opportunity, as "ready-to-wear symbolized America-its abundance and flexibility, its choices and resources" (Joselit 25). Gangsters, donned in fashionable apparel, invited others to dress the part and become success stories themselves.
However, an examination of the overcoats and hats that gangsters wore, as well as a consideration of other developments in dress, reveals that their style ultimately subverted the ideal of success through hard work. During the 1920s, men had a growing awareness of the maintenance of personal health and hygiene and desired increased comfort and freedom of movement in their clothes (Doherty 46). The "Dress Soft" style of Edward, Prince of Wales, on his trips to America "in 1 924 and 1927 where the American press reported on his dress from top to bottom every day" clearly influenced men's fashion; following his lead, American men adopted looser and more comfortable apparel (Costantino 32, 37). For gangsters, however, roomy overcoats also allowed them to conceal their weapon of choice, the gun. A photograph of Johnny Torrio (Figure 2), the man who recruited Capone from New York to Chicago to help him build an empire in bootlegging and racketeering during prohibition, hints at a lurking menace, a concealed gun possibly in his overcoat. Placing his hands in his pockets, he hides what he might have beneath his clothes. The spaciousness of the overcoat provided enough cover to carry a gun in public, and this is precisely what gangsters did. An account of the shooting of New York bootlegger Dutch Schultz and his associates at the Palace Chop House describes how one gunman, a mobster from another gang, opened fire with a shotgun he had been hiding in his coat (Sann, Kill the Dutchman 24). Capone rival Dion O'Banion, as another example, always carried at least three guns with him (Bergreen 110). With abundant reports of other gangsters sporting guns underneath their clothes, the use of the overcoat to mask a weapon was the norm. Because the gun was an instrument of criminal activity, the overcoat signified the concealment of gangsters' dishonest and illegitimate work. Moreover, overcoats could also be used to cloak identity. In the aforementioned account of Dutch Schultz's death, witnesses could not recognize one of the assassins because of the overcoat that he drew over his face (Sann, Kill the Dutchman 22). This example suggests that gangsters' clothes afforded anonymity by allowing gangsters to veil themselves as well as their unlawful and, in this case, murderous behavior. Fedoras, which could be worn to shield telling eyes from others, achieved the same effect as overcoats and similarly became a representation of gangsters' dishonesty. The overcoat and the fedora, because they allowed for secrecy by hiding a gangster's involvement in crime, are a reminder that the gangsters' success was attained through illicit methods. Their façade of accomplishment and wealth was merely an illusion. Stripped of their professional and affluent guise, gangsters were outlaws who corrupted the American dream. Illegitimacy and dishonesty lurked beneath the gangster style, mirroring the corruption prevalent in American society that, despite the hopefulness established by the progressives, fostered feelings of disenchantment and nihilism across the country.
An assessment of gangsters' clothing and accessories in the historical context of America at the time indicates that gangsters were ostentatious and flamboyant, qualities that mocked the symbols of success and further undermined the American dream. Enduring trends in dress that originated from apparel manufacturing changes during World War I underscore the extravagance of gangsters. During the war, the government began placing restrictions on fabric use and garment production in the United States in an effort to conserve materials, such as cotton and wool, for military use. The Commercial Economy Board advised clothing makers, among other constraints, to "avoid excess variations of styles" and "models with unnecessary adornments (revers, patch pockets, belts, cuffs and pleats)" (Lab 204). Americans, clothing manufacturers and consumers alike, observed these restrictions. This patriotic compliance significantly affected fashion trends, and the public began to embrace modesty in construction and design. In 1918, for example, the National Cloak, Suit, and Skirt Manufacturers Association agreed to adhere to the principles of "first, sound tailoring; second, strict simplicity of design- not too many interrupted lines, and a chaste restraint in the matter of ornament" (Weiler 408). Most importantly, this development in dress was a lasting one that persisted after the war ended (Lab 217-18). Framed within this sartorial simplicity, the clothing and accessories of gangsters seem anything but conservative. Although their expensive clothing may have signified their attainment of wealth to the public, the gangsters were also exhibitionists. Jewish mobster Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel, for instance, showed neither restraint nor modesty in his dress. He wore
[B]road snapped-brim hats, pinstriped suits with highwaisted trousers and pegged cuffs, exquisitely tailored overcoats with fur-lined collars, hand-crafted shoes with pointed toes, and handmade silk shirts. Everything was monogrammed, right down to his tailored silk shorts.
(Rockaway 165)
A photograph of Capone on his way to court (Figure 3) stresses that gangster style was certainly not demure. Although he is in a suit like everyone else, Capone's watch fob, pocket square, and visible cuffs, perhaps exposed to reveal expensive cufflinks, separate him from the crowd. His shoes shine, and his hat, tipped at a dramatic angle, shimmers. With the swagger and the smile to complete the look, it is clear that Capone was a bold dresser. These flashy and extravagant clothes demonstrate a blatant defiance of the more muted styles carried over from the war and display a tendency for excess.
Gangsters' accessories also demonstrated an insatiable thirst for ostentation. Brooklyn underworld leader Frankie UaIe (Figure 4) had a fondness for ornamentation and was known for "sporting diamonds wherever they would show" (Downey 118). He also happened to be "adorned with his diamond stickpin, two huge diamond rings, and diamond-encrusted belt buckle" the day he was shot to death (Downey 123). Capone's car, which General Motors designed specifically for him at the unheard of cost of US$30,000, exemplifies a grossly immoderate accoutrement. This car, which was "seven tons in weight, with an armor-plated body, steel-encased gas tank, bullet-proof glass half an inch thick, and a special compartment behind the rear seat for carrying guns," provided Capone with the gratuitous glamour on which he thrived (Perrett 395). Likewise, Jack Diamond's estate in Acra, New York, housed "imported French wallpaper, solid mahogany furniture, and luxurious carpets trucked in from New York City's finest stores" (Levine 75). Another bootlegger Waxey Gordon furnished his upscale New York City apartment, which had a rent of US$500 each month, with a bookcase he paid US$2,200 to have crafted just for his library and a US$3,600 bar (Downey 104; Rockaway 120). Frank Costello, the "Slot Machine King," even joined a high-class country club whose members "included highly successful businessmen, city officials, judges, politicians, and a few celebrities" (Katz 92). Taken all together, these lifestyle enhancements reflected materialism and greed. The exaggerated manner in which gangsters flaunted these symbols of success made a mockery of them and corrupted them in the same way that gangsters corrupted the American dream.
Gangsters' business-like attire signified their hard-earned wealth and power, yet their overcoats and fedoras revealed that this hard work was not honest work. Rather, the work was criminal: corrupt and immoral. Moreover, the irony is that the gangsters' outrageous clothing, in its flashiness and gaudiness, parodied their ill-gotten success. In the end, gangsters undermined the value of the success symbols they paraded, and they became a caricature of themselves and the American dream. Even though their attire was a strategy to legitimize their criminality, it ultimately pointed to their failure to attain true success. Behind the gangsters' extravagant formal style lurked depravity, and the unveiling of what the gangsters hid demonstrated that their success, which they believed was earned through honest hard work, existed purely as a myth. In parallel with the failure of early urban American idealism to shroud the nation's growing corruption and lawlessness, gangster style encapsulated a duality in American life and belied the attainment of the American dream.
Notes
I am very grateful to Daniel Nathan and Penny Jolly for their support, encouragement, and insightful comments on previous drafts. I would also like to thank Katherine Hauser, Kathy Merlock Jackson, and two anonymous reviewers for their helpful advice and suggestions.
[Reference]
Works Cited
Adler-Rochester Clothes. Advertisement. The American Magazine Oct. 1920: 221.
Allen, Frederick Lewis. Only Yesterday: An Informal History of the 1920's. New York: Harper & Row, 1931.
Allsop, Kenneth. The Bootleggers: The Story of Chicago's Prohibition Era. New Rochelle, NY: Arlington House, 1968.
Bergreen, Laurence. Capone: The Man and the Era. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1994.
Cohn, David L. The Good Old Days: A History of American Morals and Manners as Seen Through the Sears, Roebuck Catalogs 1905 to the Present. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1940.
Costantino, Maria. Men's Fashion in the Twentieth Century: From Frock Coats to Intelligent Fibres. London: BT Batsford Ltd., 1997.
Doherty, Brigid. "Fashionable Ladies, Dada Dandies." Art Journal 54.1 (1995): 46-50.
Downey, Patrick. Gangster City: The History of the New York Underworld 1900-1935. Fort Lee, NJ: Barricade Books, 2004.
Dumenil, Lynn. The Modern Temper: American Culture and Society in the 1920s. New York: Hill and Wang, 1995.
ED. V. Price & Co. Advertisement. The American Magazine Mar. 1921: 117.
The Florsheim Shoe. Advertisement. Saturday Evening Post 26 Nov. 1927: 137.
Fox, Stephen. Blood and Power: Organized Crime in TwentiethCentury America. New York: William Morrow and Company Inc., 1989.
Goldberg, David J. Discontented America: The United States in the 1920s. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins UP, 1999.
Green, Nancy L. Ready-To-Wear, Ready-To-Work: A Century of Industry and Immigrants in Paris and New York. Durham, NC: Duke UP, 1997.
Helmer, William J., and Rick Mattix. The Complete Public Enemy Almanac: New Facts and Features on the People, Places, and Events of the Gangster and Outlaw Era: 1920-1940. Nashville, TN: Cumberland House Publishing Inc., 2007.
Hill, Jeff. Defining Moments: Prohibition. Detroit, MI: Omnigraphics, 2004.
Hollander, Anne. Sex and Suits. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1994.
Joselit, Jenna Weissman. A Perfect Fit: Clothes, Character, and the Promise of America. New York: Metropolitan Books, 2001.
Katz, Leonard. Uncle Frank: The Biography of Frank Costello. New York: Drake Publishers Inc., 1973.
Lab, Susan Voso. "War'Drobe and World War I." Dress in American Culture. Eds. Patricia A. Cunningham and Susan Voso Lab. Bowling Green, OH: Bowling Green State U Popular P, 1993. 200-19.
Landwehr, A. H. "A Winner Never Quits and a Quitter Never Wins." The American Magazine Mar. 1924: 16-17, 111-12, 11516, 118.
Laver, James. Costume and Fashion: A Concise History. London: Thames & Hudson, 2005.
Levine, Gary. Anatomy of a Gangster: Jack "Legs" Diamond. New York: A.S. Barnes and Company, 1979.
Mordden, Ethan. That Jazz: An Idiosyncratic Social History of the American Twenties. New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1978.
Nash, Frederick W. "Good Salesmen are Made- Not Born." The American Magazine May 1921: 16-17, 132-34, 136-40.
Perrett, Geoffrey. America in the Twenties: A History. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1982.
Pittman, Alfred. "Station Agent at Thirty-Six Vice President at Forty." The American Magazine Oct. 1921: 16-17, 64, 67-68.
Reeve, Arthur B. The Golden Age of Crime. New York: The Mohawk Press, 1931.
Rockaway, Robert A. But He Was Good to His Mother. Jerusalem: Gefen Publishing House, 2000.
Ruth, David E. Inventing the Public Enemy: The Gangster in American Culture, 1918-1934. Chicago: The U of Chicago P, 1996.
Sann, Paul. Kill the Dutchman! The Story of Dutch Schultz. New Rochelle, NY: Arlington House, 1971.
_____. The Lawless Decade: A Pictorial History of a Great American Transition- From the World War I Armistice and Prohibition to Repeal and the New Deal. New York: Bonanza Books, 1957.
Schorman, Rob. Selling Style: Clothing and Social Change at the Turn of the Century. Philadelphia: U of Pennsylvania P, 2003.
Swiencicki, Mark A. "Consuming Brotherhood: Men's Culture, Style and Recreation as Consumer Culture, 1880-1930." Journal of Social History 31.4 (1998): 773-808.
Thrasher, Frederic M. The Gang: A Study of 1,313 Gangs in Chicago. Chicago: The U of Chicago P, 1927.
Time Magazine 24 Mar. 1930.
"U.S. Uncovers True Story of Capone's Rise." Chicago Daily Tribune 14 June 1931:2.
Weiss, Richard. The American Myth of Success: From Horatio Alger to Norman Vincent Peale. New York: Basic Books, 1969.
Weiler, Marion. "The Clothing Situation." Journal of Home Economics 10.9 (1918): 401-8.
Yablonsky, Lewis. Gangsters: Fifty Years of Madness, Drugs, and Death on the Streets of America. New York: New York UP, 1997.
Young, James C. 'Crime Gangs Organized as Big Business." New York Times 4 Apr. 1926: XX5.…...

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

Blacks in Paris During the 1920s

...Blacks World Spotlight: on the International Stage in the 1920s During World War I the United States bought nearly 200,000 African-American soldiers to France. Majority of the African American soldiers were from the southern region of the United States of America. Many Blacks stayed after the war, generating a permanent Black population in France. The ending of the First World War also marked the beginning of the New Negro Movement or Harlem Renaissance in the United States. During this time African Americans emerged as talented, creative intellectuals leaving their footprint on 1920s America. While much focus of the New Negro Movement is centered in the United States, it indeed was an international affair. The purpose of this research is to examine how a number of African Americans launched their creative debut from the international stage of Paris, France. Additional focus will center on black artists turning to Africa as a source and facture in the art. Last but not least, the effort of Author Schomburg to collect and house international works about blacks will be addressed. Utterly intrigued by African Americans and thoroughly consumed with their talents, the French displayed a respect for Blacks unseen in the United States. While a great number of African-American soldiers remain in Paris, many journeyed back to the United States. Those soldiers certainly were not greeted by change. The United States remained the same racially tensed nation. If there was any change,......

Words: 3126 - Pages: 13

Premium Essay

Leadership Style of the American Red Cross

...The American Red Cross is one of the oldest and most successful charitable organizations in America today. Since its founding in 1881, the Red Cross has helped millions of people around the globe. Recently, the Red Cross has dedicated some of its vast resources with the guidance of a new CEO refocusing the leadership and mission of this respectable company. This company in recent past was floundering under a leadership and management style that had become bloated and unproductive. The board of directors had swelled to more than 50 members with no clear lines of communication between the board, the CEO, and management. This created a void as directives and tasks became poorly understood and remained unfinished. The goals of the Red Cross have always have been honorable. The attainment of these goals had become unmanageable. There are several leadership styles that would be applicable for an institution of this size and scope. A visionary style is most appropriate when an organization needs a new direction. Using this leadership style will move people toward a new set of shared dreams where the leader will not only articulate where the group needs to go but also how it will get there. The Red Cross desperately needed a new way of doing things. A visionary style works here because it encourages ample communication in both directions. It allows workers and volunteers to be innovative, to experiment with new directions and to take risks. The Red Cross...

Words: 1126 - Pages: 5

Free Essay

American Gangster

...Somebody or Nobody The movie scene that I chose was “Somebody or Nobody” from the film American Gangster. This film is one of my all-time favorite films. This film is about a drug kingpin Frank Lucas and takes you back to the nineteen seventies and the streets of Harlem in that time. In order to make a successful film, it takes the director, production designer, and the art director. The director of this film is Ridley Scott. He is one of the greatest directors of our time. The director of the film usually is the person who directs and the actors and the film crew while making the film. He also develops the vision of the film and carries out the vision, deciding how the film should look. The director is pretty much the supervisor. He also gets to decide the camera angles, lens effects and lighting. The director also directs what tone each scene should have and what the audience should gain from the cinematic experience. The director has a say so in everything in the film from changing the script to the post- production process. The production designer of this film is Arthur Max. The production designer is the person responsible for the overall look of a film. The production designer also has one of the key roles in creating of the films. A production designer works side by side with the director and producer, they decide the settings and style to visually tell the story of the film. The production designer and the art director have similar responsibilities. The......

Words: 1011 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Fashion Changes 1920 to 1930

...The 1920s and 1930s was a decade of change in Amerike.1920's were a time of wealth and luxury, while the 1930s were more sober as the economy sank. Every decade has its own specific style of fashion, however, no matter how good or bad the times were. Both day and evening fashion for women and men reflected society's attitude towards the economy and the perception of the evolution of society Short hair stands throughout the decade. Women who keep their long locks pulled back at the nape of his neck in a chignon. Boy-like figure was the desired shape, and dropped waist hip. Hemlines gradually approached the mid of 1920's, when the famous "flapper" look became popular, the scars went down again, with jagged scars favored. Long necklaces - in particular, strings of pearls - were accessories of choice, and a tan or flesh colored stockings were popular. Red lips, dark eyes, skin and powdered finished 1920s feminine look. The most popular mod for working men in 1920 was a suit. This style has been immortalized in various characters, from Al Capone to F. Scott Fitzgerald. Men's fashion in the 1920s was heavily influenced by athletes and other famous people. Men generally want to look younger and more athletic and performs graceful white shirts under their suits. Hats, such as driving caps and hats were popular. Short fat ties worn for everyday looks, while the bow ties were popular for evening wear. During the 1930, more feminine style returned to form, emphasizing the chest,......

Words: 429 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

The Boom in the 1920s

...The effects of the “Boom”- USA 1920s The 1920s was a time in America of extreme changes in society as well as in lifestyles and industries. New inventions were made. It was the time when the USA experienced its Boom, but what was the Boom, and did everyone gain of it? During the Boom USA underwent huge changes. It was experiencing a decade of a great business boom in almost every industry. New Jobs were created because things like radios, TVs Hoovers, washing machines, refrigerators were produced. Since the people were employed they could spent more money, and simply buying something had a major economic impact. It was all a circle. Someone had to produce what was bought meaning people were employed, he would then earn money for his work and usually spent some of it, buying goods produced by someone else introducing that someone into the cycle. Henry Ford also noticed that the demand for his cars rise, which lead to him producing more cars. As a consequence he introduced a whole new production way, called mass production. Mass production is the creation of many products in a short period of time, it’s a technique that aims for low unit costs and high output. Other industries took up his system and shopping habits changed as chain stores like Woolworth established. So people bought cars which caused an overflow in cars in the traffic system. Highways were built amongst them the famous Route 66. The Highway is also known as “the mother road” it runs through the USA, from......

Words: 930 - Pages: 4

Free Essay

America in the 1920s and 1930s

...understand why they happen and better the future. In the United States in the early 1920s, a new stage appeared with different movements in the areas of politics, economics, society, culture, and foreign policy. By the events that led to the 1930s, new crazes had developed in many of these areas, while other areas remained in continuity. From the 1920s to the 1930, there were several factors that contributed to the changes in American society. The 1920s began shortly after in World War I when the United States and the Allies defeated the Germans in 1918. Many Americans were fed up with Woodrow Wilson, the 28th president from 1913 to 1921. The first election of the 1920s scoured Republican Warren G. Harding against Democrat James M. Cox. Cox supported Wilson and the League of Nations in the election. However, Harding won the election in a landslide, which was a sign of America¡¦s frustration with Wilson and his optimistic and liberal policies. The start of the new conservative era restored the power to the Republicans after the presidential election of the 1920. Harding made quite a few excellent appointments to his cabinet although he failed to demonstrate to have much intelligence. Charles Evans Hughes was appointed to be the Secretary of State, Andrew W. Mellon appointed as the Secretary of the Treasury and as leader of the Commerce Department, and Herbert Hoover bumped up the 1920s to a new level. On the other hand, Harding also appointed some of the worst......

Words: 2717 - Pages: 11

Free Essay

American Gangster

...Shannel Henry Dr. Brennan HUMN 1002 4/15/2014 Baby Face In the 1930s the United States was experiencing a depression era. This era known as ,The Great Depression, had a great effect on the movie industry. Films began to focus on sex, violence, infidelity, and promiscuous ways to target new audiences, mainly the males. The other types of genres like horror, gangster, and musical were still high in Demand during this era also. Social realism came about, which is a style of art that focuses on the ugly realities of the modern life and sympathizes with the working class people, especially the poor. The movies that were being produce during this time was to interest the men, which cause the movie producers to give women the lead roles and takeover the movie screen. A movie example is the film Baby Face. Baby Face, a movie directed by Alfred E. Green shows how women took over the ‘Big Screen’. This movie is based on Lily powers, who is played by Barbara Stanwyck, and how she moves up through her social class and financial status. She uses her beauty and her intelligence to get what she wanted from the men that she came into contact with. An example of her getting her way is at the end of the movie, when she wants the bank to fund her 15,000 to have a fresh start, but instead they gave her a new position at a firm in Paris. This is basically her getting her way because she has her new start from the scandal. Social realism is portrayed because every man that she met...

Words: 899 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

1920s and 30s

...The 1920s were a decade characterized by great change. Even though it was the decade after world war 1, it was almost 10 years of improvement for many Americans. Industries were still thriving in America and they were actually richer and more powerful than before World War I. So what event made the 1930’s so different? The Great Depression quickly turned those carefree years into ones of turmoil and despair. The decade after the first world war ever saw tremendous change. Progressivism was a leading factor of World War 1 and in the 1920’s the evidence can be seen. Industries were making their products at an increasing rate. Products that were not popular before World War I were now used by millions of Americans. Cars were only used by about 9 million Americans and by the end of the roaring 20’s that number had reached over thirty million. Also many new inventions were created making life for Americans much easier. Radios, vacuum cleaners, irons, washing machines, and refrigerators were the new electronics that everyone had to have. Refrigerators allowed for better production and transportation of food products. This allowed you to keep food cold and fresh making exporting food a valuable part of the economy. These new inventions were making home life easier for men and women. Not only were American families buying these new items but they also started purchasing stock in companies at an increased rate. Buying stocks was available before the war but was not really done. Soon...

Words: 1680 - Pages: 7

Free Essay

Time

...The Beginning of TIME: How Britton Hadden and Henry R. Luce Changed the Magazine Industry In 1923 Henry R. Luce and Briton Hadden released a most original an unique piece of work; Time magazine. Time magazine became and remained completely different from its predecessors and competitors. It changed the way people became informed, and changed the entire magazine industry. Journalists before the 1920's had to deal with the blatant attack on freedom of speech and press led on by president Woodrow Wilson's administration, and it left them too afraid or unwilling to speak their minds. As a result rarely was the news delivered noteworthy, and too many Americans were left generally uniformed. Once the press finally did recover from the suppressive Wilson administration, the economy simultaneously experienced a great advance. With Warren G. Harding, a former journalist, as president now and the oppressive Wilson out of the picture it was an ideal time for the press to experiment (Daly 178-190). Luce and Hadden met each other when they were just young boys attending Hotchkiss boarding school in Connecticut. Though their relationship was incredibly competitive from the very beginning and their conflicting attitudes led them to work together with an effective energy. Neither of them came from much money, but that didn't matter so much as they made friends that had plenty. Endowed with the great ability of drive and dedication. Enthusiastic and confident in their ideas,......

Words: 2654 - Pages: 11

Premium Essay

Why Did American Industry Boom in the 1920's?

...The following were reasons why American industry boomed in 1920’s. i. The Impact of the car ii. Credit iii. Policies of the Republican Party. Which of these reasons do you think was the most important? Explain your answer referring only to the three points stated above. (10) I think the most important reason why the American industry boomed in the 1920’s was the impact of the car. Ford was the first car and it was founded in 1903 by Henry Ford in Detroit, Michigan but it business really boomed from 1918 onwards. The first car produced was the ‘Model T’. Its first cost was $1200 but by 1928 it was reduced to $295 meaning it was affordable for all families so most people’s quality of life was improved. Due to the low prices and the new technology of the car, it appealed to lots of families meaning mass production was to occur to have the supply to meet the demand consequently leading to more employees for cheap prices doing small jobs. Not only did the car supply all of this but in the mid 1920’s Ford cars consumed 90% of petrol, 80% of rubber and 75% of plate glass which increased other industries profits too triggering the boom. All of these......

Words: 793 - Pages: 4

Free Essay

Big Band Era of the 1930s

...The Big Band Era of the 1930s The Big Band Era of the 1930s Introduction- The Great Depression during the 1930s was an extreme struggle for all Americans, but the music of the Big Band Era lifted the spirits of struggling citizens. I. Revival of music during the Great Depression A. Effects of the Great Depression on the music industry B. How music started to regain its popularity during harsh times C. The role of technology in reviving the music culture II. Impact of the Big Band Era A. Evolution of Jazz into Swing B. Characteristics of the swing culture III. “Big Bands” of the Big Band Era A. How the jazz genre began B. The components of a “big band” C. Louis Armstrong: prominent music icon of the 1930s Conclusion- The Big Band Era during the 1930s helped many Americans escape the hardships of their every day lives during the Great Depression and has left a huge impact on America which still resides in people today. The Big Band Era of the 1930s Music affects the lives of people all around the world, and it plays a major role in the development of all cultures. People use music to express themselves, an event, or thoughts in a way simple, ordinary words cannot. Because people are constantly changing, music also changes throughout the times. Many different eras of music are well known, but one very prominent timeframe in music is America’s Big Band Era of the 1930s. The Big Band Era uplifted the......

Words: 1905 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

The American Soldier 1860-1920

...HS 383 Dr. Geib March 8, 2011 Paper 2 The American Soldier, 1860-1920 The philosophy and makeup of the United States military underwent more drastic changes during the sixty years between the outbreak of the Civil War and the conclusion of World War I. During this time period, the military went from small, localized, unprofessional and poorly trained groups to large, centralized, professional military units that rivaled the best militaries in the world. The transition of the U.S. Military started when the United States’ foreign policy increased their interests worldwide following the Civil War, engaging in conflicts in both the Caribbean and in Asia, culminating when the United States entered World War I not in their own interest, but rather in the interest of protecting European allies. This signaled the U.S.’s new role as a world power that has interests in global stability and maintaining strong alliances. However, none of these military advancements would have been likely to take place had the initial priority to increase military operations hadn’t occurred solely to preserve the Union. The Civil War began with the bombardment of Fort Sumter in April 1861, but both the Union and Confederate armies were not prepared to fight a ground war at that time, as armies had to be raised, mobilized, trained, and supplied for the upcoming war. The first ground battle of the war, the Battle of Bull Run, was not fought until more than three months after the attack on...

Words: 1795 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

American Styles of Negiotiation

...A style of negotiation is influenced by personality and ability of the negotiator as well as the cultural, political, and emotional situations. Non-verbal behavior play very important role in a negotiation process. Some of the characteristics typical to American style of negotiation can be misinterpreted by others due to cultural differences. Some of the characteristics of American style of negotiation are: impatience, arrogance, poor listening, insular, legalistic, naïve, fair, friendly, flexible, risk takers, pragmatic, and cooperative. (McDonald, 2001) Some of these characteristics can be misinterpreted in other cultures. Americans get down to business quickly. They are impatient, and give little attention to relationship building. American negotiators are time conscious, and try to close the deal quickly. (Dresky, 2006) But, in other cultures, especially in Asian countries, negotiators take time in getting down to business. Impatience of American negotiators cause misunderstanding during negotiation. Negotiators of other cultures interpret it as a lack of concern for relationship building and rigorous process. American style of negotiation is misinterpreted as an unemotional style of negotiation which lacks commitment. (Dresky, 2006) In many cultures negotiators are looking for emotional bonding. A rational style of negotiation is perceived as lack of commitment. American negotiators are time conscious. But, this style of negotiation may be misinterpreted as an......

Words: 656 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Gangster Rap

...Ryan Boeh Music apparition American gangster Rap is a popular type of music in today's society, but it didn't just come to be. In the 1970's rap emerged from other types of music to become what it is today. Rap is influenced and inspired by other types of music. Its influences are closely related to each other. Rap music has derived from various types of music. In a world in which people are constantly confronted with violent acts such as rape, assault, murder, school shootings and other violence's, society is eager and anxious to find and remove all causes of these cultural ills. All the blame can not be put on one particular thing but a heavier degree of blame can be put on one thing. Some of the violent acts listed above are expressed through music. Gangster rap, which followed rap music, developed in the 1980's. Though the immaturity and lack of teaching morals has an impact on how we view and take in things, the context of gangster rap presents a negative image for people in society. Rap music has derived from other music categories. One of the first musical influences on rap music is hip hop. Hip hop is comprised of graffiti, break dancing, attitude and the dress of the people who listened to it. The start of hip hop, along with rap, can be located in the Bronx of New York. There were three major events that occurred in the Bronx that contributed to the hip hop subculture. The first event was the building of an expressway through the Bronx. This plan was......

Words: 2167 - Pages: 9

Premium Essay

Management Styles: American Vis-a-Vis Japanese

...Japan and the U.S. share a low-growth economy configeration and their management styles are beginning to merge. Management Styles: American vis-a-vis Japanese Charles Y. Yang THE JAPANESE STYLE of management has in recent vears been drawing a great deal of attention from American managers because of its apparent ability to insure organization stability in the face of unexpected external changes. At the same time, a slower rate of economic growth in Japan is compelling Japanese executives to .search for improvement iu management efficiency by focusing their attention on the American type of management. FALL 1977 This trend to draw on each other's strengths in order to better cope with growing external pressures is significant because both eountries now share a similar socio-economic situation characterized by a low rate of economic growth, a high degree of vulnerability to external variations and an advanced stage of technological development. A comparative analysis of the quality of management must first determine what is to be measured. 23 If the criterion is profit performance, most of the major Japanese companies compare favorably with leading American firms, and that is where the comparison ends. What is more meaningful is to measure the extent to which the underlying factors have contributed to profit perfonnance in the past, and how they will continue to function in the new socio-economic setting. These underlying factors consist of......

Words: 4413 - Pages: 18