The 1960s was a decade of social and political upheaval and it has been suggested that this era was a reaction to the post-war years where strict conformity was expected. This conformity perhaps being a reaction to the insecurities of the War Years.
During the 60s many young people became disillusioned by what they perceived to be the shallowness and materialism of society. I would suggest that ever since the human race was invented young people have rebelled against the previous generation, but in the 1960’s rebellion against conformity became a social movement.
If the previous generation can be typified by the ideals of conformity, obedience, patriotism, sobriety then these were the traditional values to be challenged. Women demanded equal rights and others called for racial equality and a new consideration for the environment. Many more demonstrated against the Vietnam War, conscription and the nuclear industry.
Seldom in history has a social revolution become so all-encompassing and reflected in all aspects of life and lifestyle. Rebellion rather than conformity became an expression of care, protest rather than patriotism, experimentation with drugs such as marijuana and LSD rather than sobriety. These radical changes in society were reflected in the new fashions, hairstyles and styles of music that emerged throughout the decade as was an interest in Eastern spiritual philosophy and a reverence for nature.
The thing the sixties did was to show us the possibilities and the responsibility that we all had. It wasn’t the answer. It just gave us a glimpse of the possibility. John Lennon (1940-1980)
Were the sixties the best of times or the worst of times? Did we evolve as a nation and we as individuals? Are we better for the experience?
Now apart from the above, which most definitely sounds to be one of Min’s history lessons..the 60’s to me were fun. I started working on this one this morning for Friday, but then thought what the heck, I’ll put it up today.