American Society: 1945-1968


The Beats and the Restless Youth

Beatniks—young artists who critiqued the bureaucracy the most

-grew out of the boundless prosperity of the middle class and decreasing restraint, but hindered by social constraints

-“juvenile delinquency” was disapproved, but continued to show in music (Rock and Roll), dress, and sex.

The Other America

1/5 of society lived in poverty, or just barely above poverty

-80% likely to be out of a job

-20%: elderly, NA, Hispanics, AA

The inner cities became the “ghettos” of society


The War at Home

As the war dragged on and the economy failed (inflation: 2% à 6% + 10% war tax), people began to lose hope and organized “teach-ins” to protest

The New Left (children of the Old Left)

-post-war baby boom launches the under-30 population into majority. These were the college kids with nothing to lose who were beginning to embrace minority causes

-they drew from Marxist text and the civil rights movement, formed Student Democratic Society to protest Vietnam

Port Huron Statement: announced disillusionment and wish for a new gov’t

Free Speech Movement began as an issue regarding the students’ right to be politically active on campus, but soon became a critique on society

People’s Park: The first major rally that launched student radicalism into the mainstream media, largely due to the radical-radical nature of the Weathermen

-people began to resist draft and to drive out ROTC and bar recruiters—“spring mobilization” and “moratorium”)

The Counterculture:

Hippies. Especially those in Haight-Ashbury: the embrasure of instinct through recreational drugs, sex, and dress. Go with the flow, man

-Rock and Roll becomes increasingly sexual, liberal, and political as it developed throughout the 60s. Woodstock.

[Move onto American Politics post-WWII ==>]


2 responses to “American Society: 1945-1968

  1. Pingback: Map of the US History Guide | Surviving High School: A Hypocrat in a Perpetual State of Procrastination·

  2. Pingback: The Cold War Era: 1945-1968 | Surviving High School: A Hypocrat in a Perpetual State of Procrastination·

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