American Cinema of the 1970s: Themes and Variations

By Lester D. Friedman | Go to book overview
Save to active project

Movies and the Movement


Cultural Unrest

While some historians and chroniclers identify 1968 as the start of the decade of the 1970s, others characterize 1970 as the last year of the 1960s. The conflicted social, cultural, and political conditions of the 1960s were in wide evidence at the turn of the decade, exuding dissatisfaction with the mainstream, white, middle-class establishment, the political leadership, the military-industrial complex, and the ongoing war in Vietnam. Although some American troops were withdrawn from Vietnam, antiwar protests escalated in late April when President Nixon announced that he had authorized the bombing of Vietcong forces in Cambodia. In May, four students were killed by National Guard troops during the course of one such demonstration at Kent State University, and two others were killed in protests at Jackson State University. In August, anti-war radicals bombed the Army Math Research Center at the University of Wisconsin, killing one researcher in the process. Street protests stretched across the nation, from Washington, D.C., to Berkeley.

For many, these events crystallized the nature of the conflict at home and abroad, as a large student population quickly rallied in response to the expansion of the war, while domestic tensions led to the use of armed force against anti-war protestors. It was a time when National Guard units were routinely mobilized in opposition to American college students and other anti-war protestors. The trial of the Chicago Seven came to a close, with the defendants acquitted of the charges of conspiracy to riot at the 1968 Democratic Convention, though five of the defendants were found guilty on lesser charges of inciting to riot, a judgment later overturned on appeal.

While the sexual revolution of the previous decade had been strongly associated with the hippie counterculture and the free love movement, it progressively made its way into the mainstream. Everything You Wanted to


Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this page

Cited page

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
American Cinema of the 1970s: Themes and Variations


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 285

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?