The purpose of this paper is to discuss how the 1960s saw the birth of new forms of consciousness and political awareness in Britain, which will be accomplished using close reference to at least two forms of textual material.
Since the experiences held by various individuals during the 1960s vary so tremendously according to factors such as age, location, social status, and family status, it is important to focus a study of this sort on a small set of demographics rather than by tackling the entire subject as it affected the world as a whole. This will be accomplished through specifically discussing 1960s Britain. First, a general discussion of 1960s Britain will be included, and this will be followed by references to specific texts that covered that specific time frame.
Up until the 1960s, individuals in Britain lived by a very structured lifestyle: one that is often referred to as 'traditional' by most of us today. In fact, today's government in Britain is more traditional than most Westerners are personally familiar with, so this fact lends a great deal of strength to the idea of how those who were used to an even more structured society may have reacted to such a vast change over such a short period of time. Whether or not the loss of this highly organized structure was deemed positive or negative had a lot to do with the personal opinions of those who were affected by it or who observed it, especially firsthand.
Those individuals who were more conservative in nature saw the dissolution of the old societal framework as negative. They found comfort in the structure of the more traditional and authoritative society. Moral values, to them, were stronger and more widely held underneath this type of structure. When this traditional structure dissolved, people in this group believed that society in general within Britain took a turn for the worst. They believed that the outcome of the revolution of the 60s could have been vastly different than it turned out to be, but instead, the power was in the wrong hands and Britain fell victim at the hands of the naive.
In contrast, those who were more liberal and eclectic in nature saw the dissolution of the old societal framework as positive. In this light, they were rebellious against what they had previously been faced with. They were able to stand up for what they believed was right with regard to their freedoms and rights.
No matter what side of the fence a person stood on, however, he or she undoubtedly saw certain events unfold during 1960s Britain. Blacks fought for and gained certain civil rights. The youth of the decade set trends and stood out with their own unique culture. People rebelled, protested, and pushed forth with idealism. Music took the lead, gaining status as a global language, and the Beatles were the most popular icons of the time. Christianity declined in popularity as people turned to Oriental nations for religious inspiration. Gays came forth and fought for their rights, and so did feminists. People began to behave significantly different with regard to sex, their personal relationships, and in general, and this included the media and books with relaxed censorship. The underground emerged, as did the counter-culture. People in general saw a new and better world forming-certainly one that was fairer across the different