American culture in the 1970s by Will Kaufman

By Will Kaufman

The Nineteen Seventies used to be essentially the most culturally shiny classes in American background. This booklet discusses the dominant cultural types of the Seventies - fiction and poetry; tv and drama; movie and visible tradition; renowned song and elegance; public area and spectacle - and the decade's such a lot influential practitioners and texts: from Toni Morrison to All within the relatives, from Diane Arbus to Bruce Springsteen, from M.A.S.H. to Taxi driving force and from disco divas to Vietnam protesters. in line with those that reflect on the seventies the time of disco, polyester and narcissism, this publication rewrites the serious engagement with one in every of America's such a lot misunderstood many years

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Indeed, major critical treatises of the 1970s – academic as well as popular – suggest that assumptions of such a ‘norm’ were being challenged even as they were being proposed. Telford Taylor’s Nuremberg and Vietnam: An American Tragedy (1970) outlined the 13 The Intellectual Context extent to which American involvement in Vietnam infringed aspects of international law, a charge broadened to include concerted American destabilisation efforts in Latin America and elsewhere in an exposé by Morton Halerpin and others called The Lawless State (1976).

22 Moving beyond the realms of parody, caricature or nostalgia, however, it is more useful to approach the 1970s – as Shelton Waldrep does – as ‘a period [that] exists in several parallel dimensions. 23 Approaching the decade thus will not only offer new and valuable readings of cultural texts and practices, but it will also offer ways in which to challenge the critical and intellectual negativity of Bell and like-minded thinkers who reduce the culture of the 1970s to a collective expression of narcissism, hedonism and solipsism.

The first is the apparent arbitrariness of ‘the decade’ as a meaningful periodising marker. A major historian of the 1970s, Bruce J. ’1 Others would appear to agree. 2 Music historian Greil Marcus is most dismissive of the arbitrary ‘decade marker’: As the formal end of the 1960s approached, in some circles dread over the supposed event was as great as the nagging feeling that upon the dawning of the first day of the year 2000 the world will be rendered unrecognizable, assuming it still exists.

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