The years of the 1950s and 60s was a time where many hardships occurred as global tension was high and as a result many wars occurred as well as movements. The historical issues and events of the fifties and sixties was often propelled by popular culture through art and media such as television, paintings and music. The civil rights movement succeeded in bringing equal rights to the African American population within the United States in a peaceful manner thanks to meaningful art forms. The Vietnam War was widely seen as a controversial conflict and opened insight to Australians as to what was actually happening through music and television which in turn swayed the public opinion of Australia’s involvement with the war.
Reflection of this conflict was apparent in the American ethos, in which Americans feared that if “world communism captur[ed] any American state…a new and perilous front…will increase the danger to the entire free world and require even greater sacrifices from the American people” (Document B). As illustrated by Eisenhower, “the hysteria” of communism propagating into American society and threatening the American way of life was a very prevalent fear at the forefront of the Cold War (Document A). McCarthyism, a system established by Senator Joseph McCarthy in which he made unsubstantiated accusations of subversion or treason to America, acted as the culmination of this hysteria, directly reflecting the sentiments driving the American people. Eisenhower did not engage in any domestic policies to quell these “multiplicity of fears” (Document A). Instead he compounded them with legislation such as the “National System of Interstate and Defense Highways…connect[ing] 209 of the 247 cities having a population of 50,00 more and [serving as] the country’s principal…defense” (Document D). As apparent in Document A, Eisenhower acknowledged the fact that “there is too much hysteria,” yet failed to successfully placate these concerns. Not only were these fears unsuccessfully addressed and directed at the
The sixties was a decade unlike any other. Baby boomers came of age and entered colleges in huge numbers. The Civil Rights movement was gaining speed and many became involved in political activism. By the mid 1960s, some of American youth took a turn in a “far out” direction. It would be the most influential youth movement of any decade - a decade striking a dramatic gap between the youth and the generation before them. The Sixties: Years of Hope, Days of Rage, written by Todd Gitlin, explains the rebellious youth movement, highlighting activist group, “Students for a Democratic Society,” the Vietnam War, and the Civil Rights Movement. While some of the youth became politically active, others escaped into the counterculture – disbanding their faith in government and the ideals
The 1960s in America was a decade where many problems occurred and much change was made. Some of those issues were racial segregation and foreign policy. Two of the most influential and inspirational people then were Martin Luther King Jr., and John F. Kennedy. King was an African American who fought for an end to racial segregation and was committed to this important issue. He delivered his “I Have A Dream” speech in August of 1963 in front of Washington D.C.’s Lincoln Memorial. Kennedy was the 35th President of the United States and wanted a great way to improve relations with other nations. He delivered his presidential inaugural address in January of 1961 in Washington D.C. These two incredible speeches are both similar and different, in terms of whom the speeches were composed for, use of figurative language, and how the issues discussed continue to affect society today.
In her essay, “What We Really Miss About the 1950s”, Stephany Coontz talks about the myth of the 1950s. She begins her argument by stating some reasons why the nostalgia for the 1950s exists. The main thing Americans miss about the those days is the stability. She acknowledges that this fallacy is not insane. She bases her information on facts and historical evidence. Coontz discusses that jobs, marriage, birthrate and education were at very high points in the 1950s. Jobs were secure and came with great benefits. Coontz describes that when one takes a closer look at the 1950s they will realize that comparing it to the 1990s or the 21st century is absurd. Coontz also explains that the social society during the 1950s was different than the social society we have today. Racism was also a huge factor that seems to be hid by the appearance of the 1950s. African American and Latino families received no support from the government. Discrimination was widespread. Coontz explains that the sexism
Peter Appleton and John Proctor are both similar and different in their own way. They both are in similar situations when they are faced with similar moral dilemmas. They both are coming from different time eras so the dilemma for both of them are of course going to be different. In John Proctors case he is facing the dilemma of him and his wife being accused of witchcraft, and with just being accused of witchcraft no one wanted to associate with you in any way. Peter Appleton’s dilemma is that he is a big Hollywood film writer and living the American dream, but things start to go down because he has been accused of communism. Now back in the 50s, communism was an event that if you were just simply accused of being a communist no one would
As World War II came to an end, the United States entered the 50s. This decade became a major influential time that brought many cultural and societal changes. Categories such as the economy, where a boom in new products increased, the technology world which incorporated new medicines and computers, entertainment when the television became popular and the overall lifestyles that Americans adapted to. All of these topics reshaped and created several advancements throughout society during the 1950s.
In the novel “In Cold Blood” , Truman Capote uses the Clutter family to represent the rising middle class in the nineteen fifties. The book is about a homicide murder in Holcomb Kansas on November fifteen nineteen fifty nine. This was the last day anyone would see the Clutter family alive. The Clutter’s were an average middle class American family in the nineteen fifties, nearly perfect. The Clutter family owned their own land in Holcomb with a big house away from mostly everything and everyone. Bonnie and Herb Clutter had fairly talented and humbled children Kenyon and Nancy. Kenyon and Nancy were both very popular at school participating in sports and having all A’s. They were very respected by people in Holcomb mainly just for being generally good people. In this novel Truman Capote takes us through the minds of cold blooded
In the 1950’s the cold war had begun. The fear of retaliation from communists was at large. Some Americans believed that communists were amongst them plotting. This lead to a dark time in history when American opportunity became limited for many. Most rights were limited, normal life was disrupted, and the most necessary human right may have been taken. All of these restrictions limited the American opportunity making it an age of fear and oppression rather than an age of opportunity.
Sam Roberts in the article A Decade of Fear argues that McCarthyism turned Americans against each other. Roberts supports his claim by illustrating fear, describing betrayal, and comparing it to other United States internal conflicts. The author’s purpose is to point out a vulnerable period of American history in order to demonstrate that Americans felt prey to McCarthy’s negative propaganda. The author writes in a cynical tone for an educated audience. I strongly agree with Robert’s claim. McCarthyism caused Americans to turn on each other due to fear, unawareness, and propaganda.
During this time period, not long after the end of World War II, the USSR (Soviet Union) was on the rise, which led to the Cold War. The Cold War led to increased tension between the United States, and the Soviet Union due to competition and heavy conflict of interest. The involvement of the Soviet Union led to the dramatic fear of communism among the public after witnessing the horrific environment within the USSR. This helped develop McCarthyism, the idea of investigating, and accusing someone in power of being associated with communism. Joe McCarthy himself, the founder of his very ideal also gained much popularity within this time period due to many Americans fearing the rise of communist leaders and communism itself. He maintained support throughout all this time because there was no one that would go against him or his ideals. McCarthy was easily able to gain
The expansions of bedroom-communities also materialized to accommodate the large volume of new Americans that was being produced. After the World War II numerous individuals purchased land on the outskirts of urban-cities and use the advancement of technology to create inexpensive houses that was attractive to the baby-boomers. To further accommodate the audience the G.I. Bill of the returning soldiers & their families made housing in the suburbs even cheaper. In a way it was a win-win for man and country.
A social economist views the 1950s as the social classes being defined. The time boasted an image of successfulness during a time of peace and conformity. However, the 1950s do not deserve its reputation as a time of peaceful conformity. The harmonic image of the 1950s was an over-generalization that ignores the realities of what was going on in the country. The peaceful conformity was a false image that showed it’s true colors through gender/ethnic relations and the beginning of the Rock and Roll era.
As suburban Americans began to own the same consumer goods and believe in the same values, the prospect of inclusive thought began to disappear. The aesthetic homogeneity with men’s clothing, for example, left very little room for men to dress up in anything other than the bland suits characteristic of the 1950s. Among the varying forms of homogeneity present in the suburbs, none had the effect on conservatism that racial homogeneity did. From the 1950s until “the 1990s, nearly 90 percent of suburban whites lived in communities with minority populations of less than 1 percent,” showing how the suburbs created conservative thought that would last nearly half a century in the suburbs. In order to achieve this racial ubiquity, “the suburban builders…openly advertised the fact that their communities excluded minorities,” revealing their conservative and racist beliefs William Levitt, the father of the suburbs, argued that “if we sell one house to a Negro family, then 90 or 95 percent of our white customers will not buy into the community,” further showing how minorities were feared to be a threat in a white society These racialized advertisements and thoughts encapsulated the attention of their audiences by reinforcing the idea of minorities (primarily African-Americans) being a threat to security, which dates back to the 17th Century with the institution of slavery. In addition to their racialized advertisements, suburban builders like Levitt imposed “restrictive covenants” that prevented minorities from living in their suburbs. In the lease agreement for Levittown, William Levitt includes the fact that “the tenant agrees not to permit the premises to be sued or occupied by any person other than members of the Caucasian race” in order to ensure white ubiquity. This racial exclusion was