The Seventies: Looking Back, Looking Ahead


!Read me First

Introduction

Underground in the Fifties

The Angry No

The Transcendent Yes

Alternative Life Styles

The Tug of Gravity:Co-option, Absorption, and Shlock Rock

Artiness, Absurdity, and Excess

The Seventies: Looking Back, Looking Ahead

Suggested Recordings

Music Quiz

Suggested Links

"It may not be the Sixties, but nothing's the sixties anymore." - Paul McCartney, June 1976

If partisans of the fifties found the sixties chaotic, barbaric, unsettling, a slum of a decade almost beyond endurance, sixties people have found the seventies virtually uninhabitable: law and order, structure, the death penalty, short hair, Nazis marching in Illinois, punk rock, Performance with a capital P: image without substance, illusion, formula. precious little imagination, except in the direction of orthodoxy. Less eccentricity and more uniformity. Less spontaneity, madness, vision, experimentation...

...Less motion

Phil Ochs Phil Ochs
And the ashes of the dreams
Can be found in the magazines,
And it seems that there are no more songs.
-- Phil Ochs, "No More Songs"

Some rebels (not many) continued to protest. Some turned cynical and dropped out. Sixties people have become private persons and have busied themselves with private affairs. Faced with adulthood and survival, they looked for jobs within the system that were not sellouts. Many a secretary chooses her job by the amount of time it gives her to write songs. Many an accountant chooses the relatively low-paying public accounting over corporate tax accounting. Jane Fonda has built a brilliant and profitable career within the movie industry, but she maintains a low-keyed life-style, funding projects that reflect her social and political values.

Logo of antiwar group Another Mother for Peace-"War
is not healthy for children and other living things"
Another Mother for Peace
The mentality of the sixties remains buried in the psyches of a million individuals. The values remain, but they are no longer as public as they once were. The times are dull; not the individuals.

"It's been a long and lonely winter" -- the Beatles


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