Events In History Essay

848 words - 4 pages

The year 1968 can be recognized by the mass-youth appeal in late twentieth-century political and intellectual culture. It's most frequently remembered for the assassination of Martin Luther King, the May uprisings by students and workers in France, the assassination of Robert Kennedy, the riots in Chicago during the Democratic National Convention, the massacre of government protesters in Mexico City during the weeks leading up to the Olympics, and the election of Richard Nixon--to name just a few of the more infamous events. It was a year marked by the beginning of America's decline as the single dominant economic power to emerge at the end of World War II. Many social changes that were ...view middle of the document...

The book continues to address 1968 as a rebellious era of the youth of America. The Yippies, or members of the anti-political association The Youth International Party, were active across America voicing their opinion and opposing the war. This was the age of sex, drugs, and peace, “just as someone today might ask “do you mind if I smoke?” In ’68 they’d ask “Do you mind if I shoot up?””(57). It was interesting to see the courageousness of the twenty-something’s rebelling and acting as though they were invincible to authority.

The passage “John Lennon recorded the lead vocal…showed Kennedy leading 49 to 41 o’er McC” (131) is a good example of both the form Sanders employs throughout 1968, as well as of the kinds of information conveyed. It also reveals the ways in which culture and politics are intertwined throughout the book. When exposed without its cultural trappings (as in references like the riots at the Democratic National Convention), the politics in 1968 are at times filled with a sense of threat and danger, and repeatedly marked as raw aggression. On the other hand, cultural politics are frequently presented as acts of liberation and it's in this sense that 1968 is closest to the spirit of the late Sixties, though not exclusively so. It seems as though in 1968 there is...

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