In the sections that follow, I first look at some of the slang terms that were new in the s, which were used to describe these new women. Love, romance, and "wild women" in the s The s brought many changes for young women in the United States. Yet while this would appear the case, many women still aspired to marriage as their central life goal. One new term was nooky , which occurs for the first time in COHA in and appears to still be used although it sounds pretty old-fashioned to me. There had been radical changes to the appearance of some women and within the institution of marriage, but conservative attitudes towards marriage still prevailed. In Google Books, it does increase a lot from the s to s. French kissing , which appears first in COHA first in GB in and which has possibly increased since the s. These include terms like chunk of lead unpopular young woman; in Google Books, but usually referring to the metal , sheba the female equivalent to the male sheik, as with Rudolph Valentino; hard to disambiguate in Google Books , strike breaker a woman who was ready to date her boyfriend's best friend as soon as the relationship was over; nearly always referring to work stoppage in Google Books , and a woman who knows her oil i. There are two last phrases that appear for the first time in the s according to English through the Ages , but I'm kind of at a loss to explain why they would appear at that time:
And then I turn to new words that refer to the changing relationship between men and women at this time. Chicago Now Were American women in the s really that radical? There's only one possible example in COHA though: But men must have felt a bit threatened by women, because there are derogatory terms that appear for the first time in the s: Maybe this refers to sudden, "unplanned" weddings of these flapper girls who'd left the safety of small-town life and ran into "problems" in the big city? In COHA, however, there aren't any examples since the s, and it sounds pretty old-fashioned now. Whereas men could have both a significant career and marriage, this was not the case for the majority of women. One new term was nooky , which occurs for the first time in COHA in and appears to still be used although it sounds pretty old-fashioned to me. Coupled with smoking and driving, women partook in activities which had previously been undertaken solely by men, as depicted in F. A decade-by-decade guide to the vanishing vocabulary of the twentieth century Ostler there were a number of new terms for women in the s, which reflected the news ways in which they were being viewed by others in society. Both women and men became increasingly liberal in their relationships before marriage, but like their parents and grandparents, continued to respect the institution of marriage. This political change did not reflect a transformation in the widespread conservative attitudes held about women. Predominantly middle-class women rejected conventional modes of feminine appearance with their bobbed hair and looser, shorter clothing. In appears first in maybe due to the starlets in movies, or the flappers? And what did people do on dates? Hard to find in GB, since it often refers to calendars. In Google Books, it does increase a lot from the s to s. Google Books has a handful of examples from the s. Even though the term red hot mama supposedly came into the language in the s, in COHA there are only two examples before the s the first in the s and three since then. They maintained such views while initiating new activities which experimented with different ways of showing affection. Yet while this would appear the case, many women still aspired to marriage as their central life goal. However, what was radical about some groups of American women in the s was their new approach towards their own sexuality, both in and outside of marriage. Marriage was still the goal of many women, but they approached it differently with a view to equality as a sexual partner. There are two last phrases that appear for the first time in the s according to English through the Ages , but I'm kind of at a loss to explain why they would appear at that time: At least some men enjoyed the freer, more liberated women, though, as evidenced by new terms like heavy date, non-skid, and red-hot mamas. American actress Louise Brooks, the iconic symbol of the flapper. In the sections that follow, I first look at some of the slang terms that were new in the s, which were used to describe these new women.
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