America in the 1960s

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The 1960s were a decade marred by assassinations, riots, and national political dissent. It was also highlighted by the counter-culture movement that advocated drugs, freedom of sexual expression, and anti-government feelings. America was still reeling from the economic prosperity of the 1950s, television, and the new definition of the American family as exemplified by Leave it to Beaver.


The values of materialism, freedom, and a lack of religion replaced them. While these may seem contradictory, that is why they were able to collide in the 1960s. This incongruous group of mindsets formed a generation that was rebellious, was seated in materialism, and had little religious philosophy to rely on.
One of the most influential aspects of growing up in the 1950s was the Civil Rights movement and its portrayal on television. America had experienced the front line news for the first time in its history. There was a daily dissemination of the atrocities that were committed by governmental agencies around the country. These images had a dual role in the molding of the youth of the 1950s. It was able to portray the discrimination against blacks in detail and also able to tell the story of the government's involvement in the anti-movement activities. These were the seeds of the anti-government feeling in the teenagers of the 1960s. Television was able to paint the government with a brush of mistrust as America was shown pictures of blacks facing physical abuse, while it told a story of government infiltration. ...
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