The Youth Movement, Counterculture, and Anti-War Protests

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What were the most influential social movements and trends in the U.S. during the 1970s?

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The 1960s might have been over but ripples of its influence were felt throughout the 1970s. The fights for social justice for women and minorities continued, and crusades and movements gained momentum in some areas, but also suffered setbacks due to assassinations and economic declines.

Unquestionably, some of the foundations for civil rights were shaken following the murders of important leaders and advocates, including President John F. Kennedy and his brother, Robert F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Malcolm X.  The deaths of these leaders led to riots and general unrest, but the assassinations were not the only factors in depressing the fervor of the 1960s. The war in Vietnam continued and contributed to the anger and dissatisfaction of the 1970s.

The change in 1960s attitudes can also be traced to the aging of its generation. The “Baby Boomers,” those who grew up in the 1950s and 1960s, were no longer young and relatively responsibility-free. Most now had jobs and...

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