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Woodstock: A Peaceful Rock Revolution

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Woodstock: A Peaceful Rock Revolution To some, the 60s were a decade of discovery as Americans first journeyed to the moon. Others remember the time as a decade of America’s moral decline with the advent of rock and roll and its representation of "sinful", inappropriate ideals. Yet for many people, the 60s symbolized a decade of love and harmony. Hippies exemplified these beliefs, and in 1969 they gathered at a music festival known as Woodstock to celebrate their music, their love, and their freedom in a concert that has remained on of the most influential events of the 60s. The youth of the 60s were known as the "Love generation". They made love promiscuously and openly, and preferred open to formal marriages. Weekend "love-ins", free form gatherings, communal living quarters, and rock festivals were held in response to the "love movement". The "love movement" was the hippie belief for peace and harmony. It reached its peak in the summer of 1967, and by then it had over 300,000 followers who referred to themselves as the "love children" or the "gentle people". They gathered in San Francisco, the hippie center of the world, during the summers. During these "Summers of love", they lived on the streets of Haight-Ashbury, sitting in groups along the street and strumming their guitars (Frike 62). These "love children", otherwise known as the hippies were the result of the antiwar movement that was sweeping the nation during the Vietnam war. Hippies were resolutely against the war. They participated loudly, and often violently in countless anti-war protest rallies and marches. They were known to publicly burn draft cards, and some even renounced military service for prison (Hertsgard 124). Hippies were not only antiwar, they were predominantly antiestablishment. The status symbols of their elders were decisively rejected: wealth, social position, culture, physical attractiveness, and economic security. They held in disdain, cosmetics, expensive jewelry, nightclubs and restaurants and all other refinements of the affluent society. Wealth meant nothing to them. Personal freedom to express oneself was believed to be the most important thing in life. They were antiauthority, antirace discrimination, and antipollution, in short they were rebels against the society, fighting against the moral standards of America they felt were unjust (Hertsgard 153). Events such... ... middle of paper ... ...peace. They knew about art and nature. They lived for a weekend in the still eye of the hurricane" (Woodstock). Works Cited "All Nature is but Art: Woodstock Music and Art Fair." Vogue. December 1969:194-201. "Big Woodstock Rock Trip." Time. August 1969:14b-22. Ewen, David. All the Years of Popular Music. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall Inc.,1977. Fass, Don. "The Sixties." http://www.sixties.net (19 March 1999). Frike, David. "Minor Epiphanies and Momentary Bummers." Rolling Stone. August 1989:62-91. Grunwald, Henry. "Youth Trip." This Fabulous Century: 1960-1970. 1986 ed. Hertsgard, Mark. A Day in the Life: The Music and Artistry of the Beatles. New York: Dell Publishing Groups Inc.,1995. Huges, Rupert. Music Lover’s Encyclopedia. New York: Doubleday Inc.,1984. "Rock Audience Moves to Dusk-to-Dawn Rhythms." New York Times. 18 August 1969:25. "Tired Rock Fans Begin Exodus From Music Fair." New York Times. 20 August 1969:1-3. "What Happened in the Sixties?." http://www.bbhq.com/sixties2.htm (19 March 1999). "Woodstock: Dawn of the Bigtime." Economist. August 1989:75. "Woodstock Music and Art Fair." Newsweek. August 1969:88. "Woodstock: Peace Mecca." Billboard. August 1969:1,10.
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