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US Domestic Policy since 1945

US Domestic Policy since 1945. The Economic Miracle And Post- war Anxiety. 1950’s Demographics. National Affluence GDP almost doubled 1945-1960 Inflation remained under 2% most of 1950’s Defense spending most important stimulant. 1950’s Demographics.

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US Domestic Policy since 1945

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  1. US Domestic Policy since 1945 The Economic Miracle And Post-warAnxiety

  2. 1950’s Demographics • National Affluence • GDP almostdoubled 1945-1960 • Inflation remained under 2% most of 1950’s • Defensespending most important stimulant

  3. 1950’s Demographics B. Consumption Patterns 1. Home Ownership 2. Consumer Credit 3. Savings 4. Shopping Centers 5. Teenconsumption

  4. Materialism in US culture I drive my car to supermarket, The way I takeissuperhigh, A superlotiswhere I parkit, And Super Suds are what I buy. Supersalesmensell me tonic – Super-Tone-O, for relief. The planes I ride are supersonic. In trains I like the Super Chief. Supercilious men and women Call me superficial – me. Whososuperblylearned to swim in Supercolossality. Superphosphate-fedfoodsfeed me; Superservicekeeps me new. Whowoulddare to supersede me, Super-super-superwho? John Updike echoes complaints about American materialism, 1954

  5. 1950’s Demographics C. Population Growth • 1950’s: Pop grew to 28 M (97% urban/suburban) • Life expectancy 66 in 1955 71 in 1970 • Dr. Benjamin Spock’s The Commonsense Book of Baby and Child Care

  6. 1950’s Demographics D. Suburbs • Grew 6x fasterthancities William Levitt • Mass-producedhousing development (built 10,600 houses on Long Island, 1947 Levittown) • Auto production 2 M 1946 8 M 1955 • White flight as black population in cities

  7. 1950’s Demographics E. The Middle Class • 1947 5.7 million familiesclassified as Middle Class • 1960 ‘s 12 million American familiesclassified as Middle Class

  8. 1950’s Demographics F. Jobs • FarmWorkers 9 million 1940 5.2 million 1960 • 1960 more Americans white collarthan bluecollar

  9. II. Post-warAnxiety • Conformity and security • Homogeneity • Expansion of middle class?

  10. I am beginning to think, whether it be for money, for notoriety, reputation, increase of pride, whether it leads us to thievery, slaughter, sacrifice, the quest is one and the same. All the striving is for one end. I do not entirely understand this impulse. But it seems to me that its final end is the desire for pure freedom. We are all drawn toward the same craters of the spirit – to know what we are and what we are for, to know our purpose, to seek grace. And, if the quest is the same, the differences in our personal histories, which hitherto meant so much to us, become of minor importance. Saul Bellow’s character Joseph in Dangling Man (1946) expresses a feeling later echoed by many of the most memorable characters in post war American fiction.

  11. II. Post-warAnxiety • Americans becoming “outer-directed” people rather than “inner-directed” Society molded by peer-group pressures and Corporate culture indoctrination

  12. II. Post-warAnxietyConformity in US Culture Creditsfrom TV Series, Weeds

  13. II. Post-warAnxiety 2. Leisure • Standard workweek shrank • TV • Books

  14. II. Post-warAnxiety B. Roles of Women • Women Cult of femininedomesticityafter WWII

  15. II. Post-warAnxiety C. Rebellion • Intellectualism • Critical of American life suburban life mass production • American educationquestioned

  16. II. Post-warAnxiety • Betty FriedenThe Feminine Mystique “Each suburban wife struggles with it alone. As she made the beds, shopped for groceries, matched slipcover material, ate peanut butter sandwiches with her children, chauffeured Cub Scouts and Brownies, lay beside her husband at night- she was afraid to ask even of herself the silent question-- 'Is this all?” ― Betty Friedan, The Feminine Mystique

  17. II. Post-warAnxiety “What Friedan gave to the world was, "the problem that has no name." She not only named it but dissected it. The advances of science, the development of labor-saving appliances, the development of the suburbs: all had come together to offer women in the 1950s a life their mothers had scarcely dreamed of, free from rampant disease, onerous drudgery, noxious city streets. But the green lawns and big corner lots were isolating, the housework seemed to expand to fill the time available, and polio and smallpox were replaced by depression and alcoholism. All that was covered up in a kitchen conspiracy of denial...Instead the problem was with the mystique of waxed floors and perfectly applied lipstick.” ― Betty Friedan, The Feminine Mystique

  18. III. Rebellion in the Minds • Literature Theater and Fiction • Death of a Salesman 1949 and The Crucible 1953 by Arthur Miller • Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger 1951 Conflict of individual and society

  19. III. Rebellion in the Minds Scenefrom Arthur Miller’splay, Death of a Salesman, starring Dustin Hoffman

  20. III. Rebellion in the Minds B. Rebellious Art Edward Hopper – isolatedindividualsNight Hawks

  21. III. Rebellion in the Minds • Abstract Expressionism (spontaneous expression) Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko, Willem de Kooning Jackson Pollock

  22. III. Rebellion in the Minds • Mark Rothko

  23. III. Rebellion in the Minds

  24. III. Rebellion in the Minds Willem de Kooning

  25. III. Rebellion in the Minds C. Counterculture and the Beat Generation Began in Greenwich Village, NY Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, William Burroughs, Neal Cassady Free-formpoetry and mémoire-style writing

  26. III. Rebellion in the Minds On the Road, film released in 2012 based on novel by Jack Kerouac

  27. III. Rebellion in the Minds • William Burroughs “I am forced to the appalling conclusion that I would never have become a writer but for Joan's death, and to a realization of the extent to which this event has motivated and formulated my writing. I live with the constant threat of possession, and a constant need to escape from possession, from control. So the death of Joan brought me in contact with the invader, the Ugly Spirit, and maneuvered me into a life long struggle, in which I have had no choice except to write my way out.”

  28. III. Rebellion in the Minds Film Trailer, Beat 2000 based on William Burroughs’ life

  29. HomeworkThe Unfinished Nation, Chapter 30The Affluent Society • Introduction – Economic Miracle & Timeline, p. 779 • Science and Technology, p. 783 • Bombs, Rockets & Missiles, p. 787 • Space Program, p. 788 • Consumer Culture, p. 789 • Suburban nation, suburbanfamily, p. 789 • Birth of Television, p. 791 • Travel, OutdoorRecreation, Environmentalism, p. 792 • Organized society and itsdetractors, p. 793 • Beats and Culture of Youth, p. 794 • Rock n roll, p. 795

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