The key characteristics of American society during this decade were conflict and change.
During this decade, many groups were pushing for change in the United States. There were minority groups pushing for rights, most notably in the African American Civil Rights Movement. There were women who were looking for a greater role in society. There was eventually a counterculture that wanted to fundamentally remake American society. There were anti-war protestors.
All of this change brought conflict along with it. By no means were all Americans in favor of change. The people who wanted to keep to traditional ways were very upset with all the changes. This created a backlash that was captured by President Nixon when he talked about the “silent majority.”
Thus, we can see that conflict and change typified American society in the 1960s.