To properly understand the events of the time, it is factually appropriate to view the Great Depression as not one, but four consecutive downturns rolled into one. These four "phases" are:
I. Monetary Policy and the Business Cycle
II. The Disintegration of the World Economy
III. The New Deal
IV. The Wagner Act
The first phase covers why the crash of 1929 happened in the first place; the other three show how government intervention worsened it and kept the economy in a stupor for over a decade. Let’s consider each one in turn.