Boomers, part 5: Woodstock nation…

The arrival of The Beatles in February of 1964 and the subsequent cultural changes they fostered (whether consciously or not) paralleled momentous changes in the American social and political landscape. From 1964-70 Boomers found themselves awash in powerful cultural currents coming from, it seemed, every direction:

  • The civil rights movement, which had reached its zenith with Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech at the Lincoln Memorial after the March on Washington in 1963 had seen some fruition in the passage of landmark legislation such as the Voting Rights Act. But that movement had begun to move in a more radicalized direction, partly as a result of police brutality. Even as a “loyal opponent” such as Malcolm X was assassinated by members of his own religion, younger, Boomer-aged black leaders emerged such as Stokely Carmichael and Huey Newton calling for a new approach to race relations that reflected more the beliefs of Malcolm X rather than Dr. King – an approach based on a concept they called “black power.Continue reading