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Describe the growth of teenage culture in the USA in the period of 1955 to 1975

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Introduction

- - Describe the growth of teenage culture in the USA in the period of 1955 to 1975 - The children of the post-war Baby boom were becoming adolescents during the 1950s, and in the process, a distinctive 'teen' subculture began to emerge. Teenagers now had more money and free time than any other previous generation. They also, unlike their parents teenaged lives had not experienced economic depression or a World War. During the 1950s, a wave of juvenile delinquency swept across middle-class society. One socialist went so far as to declare that 'no social problem has wrought deeper concern in the United States.' By 1956, over a million teens a year were being arrested. Car theft was the leading offence, but larceny, rape, and murder were not uncommon. "The entire city is being 'terrorized' by juvenile gangs" announced a Boston judge. Access to cars enabled teens to escape parental control, and gave unprecedented mobility to young people. ...read more.

Middle

Elvis's long hair and sideburns, his knowing grins and disobedient sneers, his leather jacket and tight blue jeans-all shouted defiance against adult conventions. Young teen girls soon flocked to his performances in tight jeans and small shirts to witness the 'white, black singer,' for them selves. Boys also soon copied the way he dressed and acted. This prompted cultural conservatives to urge parents to confiscate and destroy Presley's records because they prompted 'a pagan concept of life.' Rock 'n' roll not only survived such assaults, it flourished as an exciting new, and different music directed at young people experiencing the turbulence of puberty. It gave adolescents a self-conscious sense of being a unique group with distinctive characteristics. Linked to this rapidly developing music culture was the anti-war movement, some young people in protest of the ongoing Vietnam war turned to 'an alternative lifestyle,' hippies were strongly against war, one of their many sayings was 'make love not war.' ...read more.

Conclusion

The student movement stance won support from millions of teens around America and soon one of the first and most important student protest groups had been formed. The 'Students for a Democratic Society,' or SDS had formed groups in 50 universities by 1965, and its anti-Vietnam stance won it increased support when the nation heard the announcement that President Johnson was sending bombing raids over Northern Vietnam. At the end of 1965 the SDS had 10,000 members at 150 colleges and universities. The united force of all of the teenage culture, between 1955 and 1975 was enough to reform the United States of America for a lifetime, and in that lifetime, as the teens of the 50s, 60s, and 70s grew up, the parental culture and society changed, and with it, a wider world wide respect of cultures and societies changed. All of this is a direct result of rock 'n' roll, the Flower Power movement, and the Student protests. ...read more.

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