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Student Protests. and the. Counterculture . Where did it come from ? US ripe for change Students in college Music/Movies challenging values CR Movement What issues disturbed these students ? Problems in US (poverty, inequality, racism, greed, etc.)

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Student Protests

and the


Where did it come from?

US ripe for change

Students in college

Music/Movies challenging values

CR Movement

What issues disturbed these students?

Problems in US (poverty, inequality, racism, greed, etc.)

Personal Freedoms – free speech, restrictions @ colleges

Vietnam War

Student Activism

Student Activism

  • What actions did they take?

    • Challenged restrictions on hours when women & men could visit each other in dorms

    • Became more involved in college affairs & decision making

    • SDS – Students for a Democratic Society – org. worked for radical changes, protests, etc.

      • New Left – believed only radical changes could solve problems

      • Weather Underground – believed peaceful protests ineffective, bombed NYC Police HQ, NY Bank, Helped Timothy Leary escape from prison

Student Activism

  • What actions were taken?

    • The Free Speech Movement (1964)

      • U. of CA at Berkeley – refused to allow students to hand out leaflets, police come for leader

      • Surround police car, admin. files charges, students take over Sproul Hall (main admin. building), students arrested, others support by going on strike

    • The Teach-in Movement

      • Extended lecture and discussion on a controversial issue, obj. is to inform of what was going on

      • 1st in 1965, increase in #s as war goes on

Resistance to the War

  • Why did people begin to question the draft?

    • Morality – against the war, being forced to kill

    • Fairness – college exemptions, burden fell to the poor

  • What actions were taken to avoid/protest the draft?

    • Burning draft cards

    • Failure to register

    • Moving to Canada

    • Trying to fail physical

    • Claim to be conscientious objector

Resistance to the War

  • What actions were taken to protest the Vietnam War?

    • Protests/Attacks on campuses: ROTC, CIA, etc.

    • Demonstrations

      • 100,000 @ the Pentagon (1967)

      • Over 200 on college campuses in 1968

      • 500,000 in DC (1969) - Moratorium

    • Militant Protests – provoked confrontations

      • Weathermen, Dem. National Convention in Chicago

Values & Beliefs


Rejection of conventional norms (relationships, living patterns, etc)

Rebelling against values of parents’ generation

Freedom, Individuality, & Experimentation

Drugs, Sex, Music


Imagine no possessions I wonder if you can No need for greed or hunger A brotherhood of man Imagine all the people sharing all the world. ~ John Lennon (Imagine)

“I like ideas about the breaking away or overthrowing of established order. I am interested in anything about revolt, disorder, chaos, especially activity that seems to have no meaning. It seems to me to be the road towards freedom - external freedom is a way to bring about internal freedom.”~ Jim Morrison

“Hippie” – Core of Hippie Philosophy

To be a hippie you must believe in peace as the way to resolve differences among peoples, ideologies and religions. The way to peace is through love and tolerance. Loving means accepting others as they are, giving them freedom to express themselves and not judging them based on appearances.

Dr. Timothy Leary – advocated use of LSD – fired as professor


  • Practices

    • Clothing/Appearance

      • longer hair, beards, home-made clothing, loose-fitting dresses

    • Living

      • Lived together as couples w/o getting married, lived as groups in “communes”

      • Sex – Open about discussing it, engaging in it, “Free Love”

      • Drugs – widespread use and experimentation with drugs [pot, hallucinogens (LSD) – altered perception of reality, brain functions abnormally]

    • Music

      • new forms of rock, open to experimentation in styles, structure of songs

How do you think the older generation viewed those young people involved in the counterculture?

How is this similar to the way the older generation views young people today?


Music Scene

  • Events

    • Woodstock (August 1969)

      • Music festival, 300,000 attended, upstate NY, trouble-free weekend

      • Some artists there – Dylan, Hendrix, others

    • Altamont (December 1969)

      • Speedway in CA, Rolling Stone’s concert, not enough security, 300,000 attend

      • Band hires Hell’s Angels (motorcycle gang) for extra security– violence broke out, 1 concertgoer killed


  • Music reflected & contributed to cultural change

  • Overdoses & Deaths

Janis Joplin

Jim Morrison

Jimi Hendrix


How does the music played reflect what was going on with the counterculture?

Songs of Protest & Drugs

  • "The Times They Are A-Changin'" (Bob Dylan)

  • “War” (Edwin Starr)

  • “Give Peace A Chance” (John Lennon)

  • “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” (The Beatles)

  • “Are You Experienced?” (Jimi Hendrix)

  • “Rainy Day Woman” (Bob Dylan)

  • “Share the Land” (The Guess Who)

  • “A Day in the Life” (The Beatles)