Free «The Seventies» Essay Sample

The Seventies a book written by Bruce Schulman offers a good and rich portrait of the United States during the seventies. It is thought that the seventies played a significant role in transformation of American cultural and economic lifestyles. 1968 is a year that is considered significant in American history as it saw high level assassinations being executed and unexpected surge of support for Gorge Wallace. Generally political unrest was experienced during this period. There was an explosion of racial anger following the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. a man highly associated with noble dreams that saw tense confrontations between the protestors and the police. After his assassination, his dream of racial harmony evaporated into thin air and the modest hope of people of different races living side by side in peace disappeared.

Massive racial confrontations were experienced in American cities during this period. The African Americans fronted for reforms that would see discrimination in racial lines become a thing of the past. Fueled by radical Black Nationalism of organizations, Militance found their way through the nations black neighborhood and raged havoc. These reforms were given less attention by many regimes then and African Americans displayed growing frustrations at the slow pace of reforms.

This period saw The Columbia unrest after the Columbia University protests erupted as a result of several radical students in the University protesting against the war in Vietnam. This was significant in revolution wars as the campus revolt convinced many Americans with the idea that revolution was imminent and young radicals had moved towards power from mere protests (Schulman).

In this book, an upsetting assessment of President Nixon regime is given in detail though he is credited for initiative taken to sight and exploit the shifts of political power in the United States from the old North to the new South and West. Bruce Schulman continues his assessment in the intellectual and demographic forces that were responsible in fracturing the old melting pot consensus and gave emergence to the pervasive conception that diversity is the highest social good. Bruce Schulman also gives an assessment of the emergence of Christianity right and the subsequent rise of the new south. He gives a detail and compassionate description of Jimmy Carter's leadership though he discredits his absolute inability to deliver in his leadership.

He explores Reagan's regime and touches on his indisputable contributions towards American resurgence. He asserts that the Reagan regime did little for the working Americans. Bruce Schulman discusses in depth the southernization of American life during this period and there was a significant decline in political and social activism. Popular culture aspects such as movies, TV shows and music are discussed in great lengths in the book (Schulman).

Nixon is thought to have been brought into power by his appeal to the silent majority many of whom represented old sets of values such as self restraint and patriotism but greatly opposed the rampant student's protests and black militants at the time. The Cultural Revolution during this period went hand in hand with the economic revolution. Many things that started with liberal universal dreams that fronted for common humanity faded away into skepticism and fragmentation. Republican politicians got a boost as the democrat's governance was given a big blow in the public eye as the Watergate scandal unfolded and it brought the notion that the government can not be trusted. The tax revolt began in the seventies through the populist campaign for what they termed equity rather than mindless cutting. The 'brotherhood dreams' of most civil rights activists and movement crumbled into diversity (Schulman).

Bruce Schulman gives an account of the fragmentation of grand democratic deals and society liberal coalition of the working class white ethics, labor, the northern elites and African Americans that had dominance in American politics. There is rise of concurrent political rise of the Sun Belt west and south and the traditional libertarian stand that were the dominant political alignments in the regions. Jimmy Carter is thought to be the decade's odd figure having been a victim of inflation and problem that he himself diagnosed of self confidence. Jimmy Carter fronted for equal parts Baptist moralism and made efforts in engineering expertise that was deemed hopelessly out of sync with the times (Packer). Schulman displays Nixon as a brilliant leader and strategist who saw the demise of liberal coalition. Women feminist under the women's liberation movement had strong demands that were geared to protect women rights and defined their sexuality and demands.

The things the feminist's were fighting for included equal pay for equal work, equal job opportunities and education chances, free contraception, legal and financial independence for women, free child care and freedom of sexual preference. Women feminist generally demanded for protection of each and every woman from intimidation of any sort by threat or use of any male violence whatsoever. It largely advocated for an end to the laws, institutions and many assumptions which perpetuate male dominance in the society and general men's aggression towards women.


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