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Protest Songs of the 1960s and 1970s
Meghan Plateon 26 September 2013
Transcript of Protest Songs of the 1960s and 1970s
Protest Songs from the Vietnam Era
Protest songs, while inspiring and meaningful
to the counterculture, enraged mainstream society, intensified anti-Vietnam war sentiment, and caused unrest in America throughout the 1960s and 1970s.
"For What It's Worth," by Buffalo Springfield
written by Stephen Stills, released in 1967
not originally written about the Vietnam War, but quickly picked up by anti-war groups
simple, but applicable to many situations
now associated with the anti-war movement
Counterculture and the Anti-War Movement
"Bring the Boys Home," by Freda Payne
released in 1971
banned by the Armed Forces - feared that the message would inspire the enemy and discourage American soldiers
not well known
"Ohio," by Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young
"Fortunate Son," by Creedence Clearwater Revival
written by John Fogerty, released in 1969
captures anger about the inequality of those serving in Vietnam
members of CCR served in the military during the Vietnam Era
written by Neil Young in response to the Kent State shootings on May 4, 1970
Young was not shy about his feelings about Vietnam
became a strong anti-war song - one of the most famous from that time
the Vietnam War was at its height in the late 1960s and early 1970s
soldiers, with exceptions, were from the lower class and minority groups - not a "rich man's war"
many young Americans favored the anti-war movement and expressed their opinions through various forms of protest, one of the most popular being music
counterculture (hippies) favored a liberal, experimental way of life and used non-violent protest
included many college students, but still a minority of the population
angered mainstream Americans - George Will (columnist) said the "counterculture produced little culture, and it countered nothing."
adopted many protest songs to capture their feelings and express them
many Americans still lived a quiet and steady life, despite the tense environment at the time
deeply angered, especially past veterans, by the anti-war protestors
traditions from the earlier years carried over - importance of family, hard work, and accomplishing the American Dream
patriotic feelings and anti-Communist beliefs were still extremely strong
Patterson, James T. Grand Expectations: The United States, 1945-1974. New York: Oxford UP, 1996. Print.
Throughout the late 1960s and the early 1970s, protest music spoke for the anti-war movement and tried the patience of mainstream Americans.