Timeline of the 60's Counter-Culture - Rossiter Johnson - ebook
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The counterculture of the 1960s refers to an anti-establishment cultural phenomenon that developed first in the United Kingdom (UK) and the United States (US) and then spread throughout much of the Western world between the early 1960s and the mid-1970s, with London, New York City, and San Francisco being hotbeds of early countercultural activity. The aggregate movement gained momentum as the American Civil Rights Movement continued to grow, and became revolutionary with the expansion of the US government's extensive military intervention in Vietnam. As the 1960s progressed, widespread social tensions also developed concerning other issues, and tended to flow along generational lines regarding human sexuality, women's rights, traditional modes of authority, experimentation with psychoactive drugs, and differing interpretations of the American Dream. Many key movements related to these issues were born or advanced within the counterculture of the 1960s.As the era unfolded, new cultural forms and a dynamic subculture which celebrated experimentation, modern incarnations of Bohemianism, and the rise of the hippie and other alternative lifestyles, emerged. This embracing of creativity is particularly notable in the works of British Invasion bands such as the Beatles, and filmmakers whose works became far less restricted by censorship. In addition to the trendsetting Beatles, many other creative artists, authors, and thinkers, within and across many disciplines, helped define the counterculture movement.Several factors distinguished the counterculture of the 1960s from the anti-authoritarian movements of previous eras. The post-World War II "baby boom" generated an unprecedented number of potentially disaffected young people as prospective participants in a rethinking of the direction of American and other democratic societies. Post-war affluence allowed many of the counterculture generation to move beyond a focus on the provision of the material necessities of life that had preoccupied their Depression-era parents. The era was also notable in that a significant portion of the array of behaviors and "causes" within the larger movement were quickly assimilated within mainstream society, particularly in the US, even though counterculture participants numbered in the clear minority within their respective national populations.The counterculture era essentially commenced in earnest with the assassination of John F. Kennedy in November 1963. It became absorbed into the popular culture with the termination of U.S. combat military involvement in Southeast Asia and the end of the draft in 1973, and ultimately with the resignation of President Richard Nixon in August 1974.In the broadest sense, 1960s counterculture grew from a confluence of people, ideas, events, issues, circumstances, and technological developments which served as intellectual and social catalysts for exceptionally rapid change during the era.

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TIMELINE OF THE 60′S COUNTER-CULTURE

..................

Rossiter Johnson

JOVIAN PRESS

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Copyright © 2017 by Rossiter Johnson

Interior design by Pronoun

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

Timeline of the 60’s Counterculture

1954

1955

1956

1957

1958

1959

1960

1961

1962

1963

1964

1965

1966

1967

1968

1969

1970

1971

1972

1973

TIMELINE OF THE 60’S COUNTERCULTURE

..................

THE COUNTERCULTURE OF THE 1960S refers to an anti-establishment cultural phenomenon that developed first in the United Kingdom (UK) and the United States (US) and then spread throughout much of the Western world between the early 1960s and the mid-1970s, with London, New York City, and San Francisco being hotbeds of early countercultural activity. The aggregate movement gained momentum as the American Civil Rights Movement continued to grow, and became revolutionary with the expansion of the US government’s extensive military intervention in Vietnam. As the 1960s progressed, widespread social tensions also developed concerning other issues, and tended to flow along generational lines regarding human sexuality, women’s rights, traditional modes of authority, experimentation with psychoactive drugs, and differing interpretations of the American Dream. Many key movements related to these issues were born or advanced within the counterculture of the 1960s.

As the era unfolded, new cultural forms and a dynamic subculture which celebrated experimentation, modern incarnations of Bohemianism, and the rise of the hippie and other alternative lifestyles, emerged. This embracing of creativity is particularly notable in the works of British Invasion bands such as the Beatles, and filmmakers whose works became far less restricted by censorship. In addition to the trendsetting Beatles, many other creative artists, authors, and thinkers, within and across many disciplines, helped define the counterculture movement.

Several factors distinguished the counterculture of the 1960s from the anti-authoritarian movements of previous eras. The post-World War II “baby boom” generated an unprecedented number of potentially disaffected young people as prospective participants in a rethinking of the direction of American and other democratic societies. Post-war affluence allowed many of the counterculture generation to move beyond a focus on the provision of the material necessities of life that had preoccupied their Depression-era parents. The era was also notable in that a significant portion of the array of behaviors and “causes” within the larger movement were quickly assimilated within mainstream society, particularly in the US, even though counterculture participants numbered in the clear minority within their respective national populations.

The counterculture era essentially commenced in earnest with the assassination of John F. Kennedy in November 1963. It became absorbed into the popular culture with the termination of U.S. combat military involvement in Southeast Asia and the end of the draft in 1973, and ultimately with the resignation of President Richard Nixon in August 1974.

In the broadest sense, 1960s counterculture grew from a confluence of people, ideas, events, issues, circumstances, and technological developments which served as intellectual and social catalysts for exceptionally rapid change during the era.

1954

..................

APRIL 6: ON THE FLOOR of the US Senate, Senator John F. Kennedy opines that to “pour money, material, and men into the jungles of Indochina without at least a remote prospect of victory would be dangerously futile and self-destructive.” After his election to the presidency in 1960, Kennedy escalates US involvement in the conflict which becomes the Vietnam War.

April 27: The Geneva Accords grant independence to French Indochina, establishing Vietnam as a unified, independent nation in name only. The US is not a signatory to the treaty. The French are officially out of Southeast Asia, leaving a people, and a raging civil war, behind.

May 17: Brown vs. Board of Education: The US Supreme Court rules unanimously that racial segregation in public schools is unconstitutional. The doctrine of “Separate but equal” as a legal and moral pretext for segregation is no longer enforceable by governments, and true racial integration begins in schools in the southern US.

1955

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FEBRUARY: SEATO: THE SOUTHEAST ASIA Treaty Organization is formally activated, nominally obligating the US to intervene as part of collective action in case of military conflagration in the region. The non-binding SEATO commitment, however, is only invoked as justification for involvement in Vietnam by future President Lyndon Baines Johnson (LBJ) after later escalation of hostilities there proves unpopular.

July 9: Rock Around the Clock: Bill Haley’s version of the keystone song begins an eight-week run at #1 on Billboard. The Rock & Roll era begins.

August 28: Emmett Till Murder: A black teen is brutally slain in Mississippi after allegedly flirting with a white woman. The incident becomes a pivotal event in the growing Civil Rights Movement after Till’s mother allows the boy’s mutilated body to be viewed, and after two white men (who later confess to the murder) are acquitted by an all-white, all-male jury. In 2017, Till’s apparently coerced female accuser recants key testimony she gave under oath.

September 2: UK politician Baron Mayhew experiences the psychedelic effects of mescaline “guided” by Humphry Osmond. The event is filmed for broadcast by the BBC, but never airs.

September 30: James Dean: The now-legendary star of Rebel without a Cause and early icon of the disaffected generation dies in a sports car crash at age 24 at Cholame, CA.

October 7: Six Gallery Reading: Beat poet Allen Ginsberg first performs his soon to be scandalous Howl.

October 26: Village Voice: One of the earliest and most enduring alternative newspapers is launched by Ed Fancher, Dan Wolf, John Wilcock and Norman Mailer in New York City.

December 1: Activist Rosa Parks refuses to cede her seat on a public bus in Montgomery, AL, and is arrested. A successful bus boycott by local blacks ensues, while the ACLU takes on and wins Parks’ legal case.

1956

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APRIL: BRITISH PSYCHIATRIST HUMPHRY OSMOND coins the word “psychedelic” from the Greek words psyche ("mind") and delos ("manifest"), intended as an alternative to psychotomimetic or “hallucinogenic” in LSD parlance.

April 21: Heartbreak Hotel: Elvis Presley’s first #1 hit tops the charts for 8 weeks as Elvis creates teenage pandemonium in households across the western world.

August: The FBI’s COINTELPRO domestic counterintelligence program commences. The surveillance effort is initially directed against stateside communist activities, but grows to include illegal invasions of privacy targeting civil rights and anti-war activists.

1957

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MASTERS AND JOHNSON BEGIN SCIENTIFIC research into human sexual response in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Washington University in St. Louis. The first of many widely read books regarding their research is published in 1966.

January 10: The Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) is formed in Atlanta, GA.

September 5: On the Road: Years in the works, a somewhat tamed version of Jack Kerouac’s seminal novel of the Beat Generation is published.

September 23: US President Dwight D. Eisenhower signs an executive order sending Federal troops to maintain peace and order during the racial integration of Central High School in Little Rock, AR.

October 4: The western world is shocked and deeply fearful when the communist USSR launches Sputnik 1, the first artificial space satellite, as the ability to launch a satellite equates to the ability to launch an ICBM, thereby directly threatening much of the world with long-range missile attack for the first time. Confidence is further shaken when Vanguard, the rushed US attempt to equal Sputnik, explodes on the launchpad in December.

November 15: Albert Schweitzer, Coretta Scott King, and Benjamin Spock post an ad in The New York Times calling for an end to the nuclear arms race. SANE is later formed.

1958

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FEBRUARY 17: THE CAMPAIGN FOR Nuclear Disarmament is inaugurated in London, introducing the “Peace symbol” from the letters CND.

March 24: Elvis Presley, the biggest recording star in the world, is inducted into the US Army. Presley serves his 2 years honorably.

April 2: Herb Caen of the San Francisco Chronicle coins the term beatnik to refer to aficionados of the Beat Generation.

April 4–7: Thousands protest in the first major Aldermaston march at Easter, organised by the Direct Action Committee Against Nuclear War and supported by the CND, Trafalgar Square, London. The protests are accompanied by a festival side with jazz and skiffle bands.

SANE claims 25,000 members in 130 chapters.

The New Left SLATE student political party is formed at the University of California, Berkeley.

Eisenhower is the first US President to ask a joint session of Congress to pass the long-debated Equal Rights Amendment.

The Affluent Society: Harvard economist John Kenneth Galbraith’s highly influential work is published.

1959

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JANUARY 1: REVOLUTIONARY FORCES UNDER the leadership of Fidel Castro overthrow the corrupt Batista government in Cuba. 50 years of repressive one-man rule by the future Soviet ally ensue before Castro relinquishes control to his brother.