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The Sixties

The Sixties were a time of rebellion and non-conformity. The counterculture began by the teenagers, called hippies, who hated the boring world their baby-boomer parents created. Timothy Leary helped to begin this hatred of sameness when he encouraged them to "Tune in, turn on, drop out." There was also a strong feminist movement which occurred because of the new rebellion by the women. This was lead by people like Gloria Steinem and Betty Friedan. The Civil Rights movement was also in full swing. The blacks had had enough of the hatred and ridiculous segregation rules. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led the way, but was murdered. The blacks finally won their rights and were finally given equal rights to the whites, although it DID take a long time.

The music of the time reflected the social unrest of the youth. They flocked to the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco. Folk music became popular and encouraged them to wear "flowers in their hair." Simon & Garfunkle and the Mamas & the Papas led the way. Jimi Hendrix and the Doors were leading the way in the rock scene. Their fierce lyrics and awesome music captivates as many today as it did then. Bands like the Beatles and the Rolling Stones were part of the huge British invasion that happened on the music scene and swept the US like a wildfire. Women rockers also made a big impact such as Janis Joplin and Joan Baez. Bands like Crosby, Stills, & Nash and Neil Young talked about political issues, such as the shootings at Kent State.

Television was gaining in popularity. Kids shows like "Sesame Street" and "Mister Roger’s Neighborhood" premiered as well as Hanna-Barbera’s cartoon, "The Flintstones." Family shows, like "The Andy Griffith Show" were also popular. There were also comedies like "Bewitched."

The movies were also greatly changing. One of the most famous movies, Psycho, was from the Sixties. The most famous scene is probably the one where the woman is in the shower and screams. Some of the famous musicals like West Side Story and The Sound of Music were being made into movies for the world to enjoy. Many actors and actresses that are famous today began their careers in the Sixties. These include Elizabeth Taylor, Dustin Hoffman, Sean Connery, Jack Lemmon, and Julie Andrews. The actress who spans many decades, Audrey Hepburn was also still going strong during this time.

Art changed drastically in this decade. Andy Warhol changed the world with his silk screen masterpieces of things from Campbell Soup cans to Marilyn Monroe.

There were many fads during this time. The hippie look: ironed hair, bell bottoms, Birkenstocks, vests, bra burning, bandannas, was VERY popular. For the more conservative girls, Jackie Kennedy was THE person to dress like. The most famous model of the time was Twiggy, who’s name was VERY appropriate as she really was just about the size of a twig.

The Sixties was a time of tragedy in politics. With the Vietnam War raging, there was alot of social unrest which lead to the deaths of students protesting at Kent State University. Earlier in the decade, there were many assassinations including that of John Kennedy, his brother, Bobby, and Dr. King. There brutal acts of violence left the nation distraught as they grew even more pessimistic towards society.

All in all the Sixties were a decade that many talk about, but few who were actually there remember. (There was a large amount of hallucinogenic drug abuse due to Timothy Leary’s famous line.) They will, however, be remembered as the crazy psychedelic times of Woodstock, hippies, rock and roll, and rebellion.