U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Covid-19 Information Page
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > History
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Closed Thread Start New Thread
 
Old 03-08-2012, 09:01 AM
 
12,094 posts, read 11,749,458 times
Reputation: 10132

Advertisements

If we're talking just about US history (world history is too broad I think for this topic), I'd say the 60s was the decade that saw the most change. It wasn't the 1960s though; it was the 1860s.
Rate this post positively

 
Old 03-14-2012, 06:41 AM
 
10,696 posts, read 10,347,482 times
Reputation: 34308
The sixties certainly resulted in a lot of change for this country. Much of it was actually good. Some of it was not. This topic has been well discussed by others who have posted before me. Perhaps, what I will do is simply point out the changes during the decade that seemed most significant:

1. The Civil Rights Movement which vaulted African American people from a position of subservience to a point at the end of the decade where--at least in a legal sense--equal rights had been secured by passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and the Fair Housing Act of 1968.

2. The Vietnam protests. This was actually a very critical event in many ways. In retrospect, it was the beginning of the time when Americans began to doubt their government and the truthfulness of the people who serve in it. A little known fact about our system of government is that until that time, Presidents basically were dictators when it came to foreign policy and defense issues. The media went along. The public went along. There was a belief that ordinary people were too far removed to understand these issues and no President would ever act against our interests.

3. The pill and the sexual revolution. Birth control pills became available in about 1960. Prior to that time, out of necessity, most people had to be far more careful when it came to sex. When a simple means to eliminate the threat of pregnancy was developed, it radically changed the way that many people thought about premarital sex. Its also worth noting that the worst sexually transmitted diseases of the day could be treated easily with a single shot of penicillin. In short, most people thought there was little cost involved in having unprotected sex with multiple partners.

4. Hippies, drugs, and the counterculture. This is something I have always struggled to make sense out of. By the 1960's, America had become an unbelievably prosperous nation. Perhaps, the easy availability of jobs and a good lifestyle made some people choose to reject those values. The Fifties had been an era when many people were forced to conform and it was extremely uncomfortable for some. There is a saying that many people don't know where the "center" is. They just jump from one extreme to another. The Hippie Movement seems a rejection of values where we were expected to dress a certain way, act a certain way, go to school, get a good job, and live happily ever after with a spouse and two kids in suburbia. The really dark side of the period was that use of illegal drugs became common. Many people don't know that in the Fifties there was plenty of drug use in black ghettos. In the Sixties, people outside the ghetto started experimenting with drugs.

5. The Women's Movement. This didn't really begin until about 1970, but the Sixties laid the groundwork for it. Women participated in the Civil Rights Movement and in anti-Vietnam protests. Honesty, I think there was a very low level of "consciousness" that there were any issues for women to want to protest about among everyone. This explains why this movement came last. However, it slowly began to dawn on some women (and some men) that some of the different ways men and women were treated in our culture were harmful to women. A culture that didn't allow women to work except as nurses, teachers, nannies, or other "feminized occupations" kept women's wages low. The sexual revolution of the Sixties was resulting in more divorce and more women were entering the labor force. Until 1964, it was completely legal for an employer to discriminate in the wages he paid men and women for the very same work. Even the passage of a law didn't make much of a dent in that problem for a couple of decades afterwards. There was also discrimination against women in sports programs in schools and other areas that kept many from realizing full potential.

Simply put, the Sixties were a time when authority was challenged and many Americans began to question whether their most basic values were correct. In that sense a huge amount of change did take place in that decade.
Rate this post positively
 
Old 03-14-2012, 08:06 PM
 
Location: Earth
17,444 posts, read 25,212,720 times
Reputation: 7360
Quote:
Originally Posted by markg91359 View Post

2. The Vietnam protests. This was actually a very critical event in many ways. In retrospect, it was the beginning of the time when Americans began to doubt their government and the truthfulness of the people who serve in it. A little known fact about our system of government is that until that time, Presidents basically were dictators when it came to foreign policy and defense issues. The media went along. The public went along. There was a belief that ordinary people were too far removed to understand these issues and no President would ever act against our interests.
So, the Korean War was universally popular and nobody questioned Truman's judgment?
Rate this post positively
 
Old 03-16-2012, 03:44 PM
 
28,900 posts, read 48,690,844 times
Reputation: 46235
The period of 1910-1919 were likely the most momentous, in the past century possibly even more so than World War II. Because it shook the intellectual, spiritual, and moral underpinnings of Western civilization to its core. Before 1914, would Hitler, Mussolini, Lenin, and Stalin have been possible in Europe? Completely doubt it.

What's more, before 1918, do you think that England and France would have hesitated to oppose the equivalent of a Hitler or Mussolini? Doubt it.

Nope. I would argue that the period in question led to the utter destruction of the values citizen held in relationship with their governments and with each other. The very culture and intellectual life of the world changed. To me, the best work on this period was The Proud Tower by Tuchman, who carefully limns the cultural life of Europe to 1914. After reading it, one cannot help but be struck by what was destroyed.

Some other candidates?

World War II, obviously.
1848, the year of revolution in Europe
The 1520s, what with both the Reformation and the Renaissance going into full swing
The decade the Black Plague swept the world.
Rate this post positively
 
Old 03-17-2012, 11:35 PM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,682 posts, read 48,305,519 times
Reputation: 11862
Quote:
Originally Posted by cpg35223 View Post
The period of 1910-1919 were likely the most momentous, in the past century possibly even more so than World War II. Because it shook the intellectual, spiritual, and moral underpinnings of Western civilization to its core. Before 1914, would Hitler, Mussolini, Lenin, and Stalin have been possible in Europe? Completely doubt it.

What's more, before 1918, do you think that England and France would have hesitated to oppose the equivalent of a Hitler or Mussolini? Doubt it.

Nope. I would argue that the period in question led to the utter destruction of the values citizen held in relationship with their governments and with each other. The very culture and intellectual life of the world changed. To me, the best work on this period was The Proud Tower by Tuchman, who carefully limns the cultural life of Europe to 1914. After reading it, one cannot help but be struck by what was destroyed.

Some other candidates?

World War II, obviously.
1848, the year of revolution in Europe
The 1520s, what with both the Reformation and the Renaissance going into full swing
The decade the Black Plague swept the world.
What about the 1890s?

It saw the invention of the automobile

Telegraph

Flight

Morse code
Rate this post positively
 
Old 03-18-2012, 07:48 AM
 
Location: Sierra Vista, AZ
16,496 posts, read 21,806,038 times
Reputation: 8694
1960s or 1860s??
Rate this post positively
 
Old 03-18-2012, 12:03 PM
 
Location: Sierra Vista, AZ
16,496 posts, read 21,806,038 times
Reputation: 8694
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boompa View Post
1960s or 1860s??
I recall the 1860s were pretty active, what with the Civil War
Rate this post positively
 
Old 03-18-2012, 05:06 PM
 
Location: Neither here nor there
14,810 posts, read 14,612,713 times
Reputation: 32954
I think the 1960's saw the most social changes in recent history. By the end of that era out-of-wedlock babies were no longer raising eyebrows, living together unmarried was much more acceptable, virginity (in women) was no longer expected by most men who were seriously courting a woman, fashion changed considerably from covering most of a woman's breasts to no bras under knit shirts, much shorter skirts that showed more flesh, marijuana use became much more common. Then there were the technological changes that put Neil Armstrong and crew on the moon. Once those trends were started, there was no stopping it.
Rate this post positively
 
Old 07-02-2013, 06:26 PM
 
2,096 posts, read 4,098,662 times
Reputation: 1236
I would say the 1990s and 2000s because of Americanization of the world and the rise of mass cell phone and Internet use all around the world. Also the change towards postmodernism.

But that's for living history. I'd say the Black Death is the biggest short change in a long time.
Rate this post positively
 
Old 07-02-2013, 07:19 PM
 
Location: Western North Carolina
5,267 posts, read 8,386,804 times
Reputation: 11446
In the early 1960's, when I was born, most women stayed home while their husbands went off to work (including all the Mom's in my suburban DC neighborhood.) Most families could live comfortabley on just the one income.

During the later 1960's, radical change occured, including the women's movement, which preached that a woman should be able to have a choice between home and a career, if that was what she wanted.

By the time I graduated at 18, in the late 1970's, most of us had NO CHOICE but to work, because the economy pretty much required that to be able to sustain the same lifestyle my parents had on just one income just two decades before, now required two incomes.

I wanted to stay home with my children, but could not. Some freedom.
Rate this post positively
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2020, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Contact Us - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 - Top