tv Lectures in History 1970s Culture Economics CSPAN March 24, 2019 12:00pm-1:16pm EDT
[applause] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] announcer: to join the conversation, like us on facebook at c-span history. history,ectures in university of massachusetts boston professor vincent canto teaches a class about the culture and economics of the 1970's. he talks about the 1973 oil crisis, demographic changes and the rise of new types of music such as disco trade his class is about an hour and 15 minutes.
today we will discuss sort of an overview of america in the 1970's. remember in the beginning we talked about it was a time for historians to understand what the year is about, 25 years of perspective at least. for a while the 1970's were seen as a bit of a joke of a decade, right, bellbottoms, disco, bad hair. in recent years, and historians have seen the 1970's as very important. in some ways, more important than the 60's, which has gotten a lot of attention. one of the themes that historians talk about is calling this era the age of limit. we will get to a little bit of how that means. we will also talk about the question mark. was it really an age of women? -- age of limits? we will discuss the import of the deck paid and the influence
it had not just on the 80's, but really down to our time today. recapping what we talked about earlier, we see in the 1970's a pretty profound loss of faith in american institutions, driven by nixon's red dictation -- red just -- ridges nation -- resignation driven by watergate in 74, the final end of the vietnam war in 1975, you see the iconic photo of the helicopter atop the u.s. embassy taking up the last of the vietnamese, soon-to-be refugees, out of the country. the loss of the war was devastating in many ways for the u.s. it really showed on of the world's superpower had a big achilles' heel. it had a profound effect on the military, on america at home. the antiwar movement divided the country. the third thing was the church committee hearings. there were two committee hearings in congress that looked into the central intelligence
agency. for the first time, americans got to see what this covert intelligence agency was doing behind closed doors, especially in terms of assassination attempts against figures. this was shocking to many americans. adding to the loss of faith americans had in their government and in big institutions in general. the 1970's are a time of economic troubles. we talk about the great postwar economic boom. how the economy after world war ii expanded, group, the middle -- expands, grows, the middle cast grows. not everyone gets taken up in this expansion. large numbers of people do. that really comes to an end around 1969/1970. there's a short recession. then there's the big recession around the oil crisis in 1973 -1975. then another one from 1979/1982.
the word that defines the economic troubles of this time is stagflation, inflation mixed with a stagnant, slowly growing, if not growing at all, economy, and rising unemployment rates. you see inflation by 1974 hit 11%. it dips down in 1978. by 1979, it goes back up again. inflation in the u.s. economy begins in the late 1960's. the economic pressures of the vietnam war, coupled with the great society, put pressures on the u.s. economy. once a country experiences inflation, it can be devastating. not just economically, but another example of losing faith in the incident, in this case losing value of the dollar. , very high inflation erodes the value of the dollar and sake in
-- and erodes faith in the dollar. the mid 70's recession coincides with the great oil crisis, when opec, the organizing nations, mostly the middle east, also including venezuela, nigeria, put an oil embargo on the u.s. for u.s. support of israel in 1973 yom kippur war. it is a retaliation for the u.s. siding with israel. we haven't talked about the middle and -- middle east, but it is at this time the u.s. really comes in on the side of israel, in terms of the middle east conflicts there. the oil crisis is going to limit the amount of oil we have. it boosts the overall price of oil. gas lines are seen all across the country. there will be another oil crisis at the end of the 1970's as well.
i still remember my father having to get up early in the morning to go to the gas station to get the car filled up. this is when we see a decline in domestic oil production in the united states. this concern how dependent are , we on foreign oil that a foreign country can close this spigot on oil and severely damage our economy? this is the start of the energy conservation movement. maybe we cut back on our use of energy. this is the time period when you get the 55 mile an hour speed limit. it leads to concern. it's all about conserving energy. the other economic issue of the 70's is economic deregulation. the idea that the economy needed to be opened up. government regulation needed to be lifted. we tend to think of that with reagan in the 1980's.
but the reality is it actually begins in the 1970's under carter, but also congress. it was clear that during this economically troubled time that somehow congress needed to slip -- lift some regulations to sort of boost the economy. the airlines are one of the biggest places where we see the effects of deregulation. it was one of the most highly regulated industries in the country. banking, trucking, many other smaller industries, as well. they saw economic deregulation beginning in the 70's and going into the 80's. the essay on the decade, we read his book, quote the electric kool-aid acid test." it's the continuation of the same theme, what he calls the third great awakening. great awakenings, we talk about religious fervor. from the electric kool-aid acid
test he is talking a lot about , the idea of the pranksters engaging in a form of religious experience. not in a traditional judeo-christian sense, but a very experimental different sense, wolf continues talking about that by talking about the me -- me the decade of rampant almost narcissistic , individualism. let's talk about me. this is a quote from the me decade. " once the dreary little pastors -- little pastors started getting money in the they did an 1940's, astonishing thing, they took their money and ran. they did something only aristocrats, intellectuals, and artists were supposed to do, they discovered and started working on me. it created that greatest age of individualism in american history. all rules are broken." this focus is central and begins in
the 1960's, then continues into the 70's. wolf begins the essay by discussing a kind of daytime talk show, or what would soon be see -- seen on them like an individual talking to the public about their hemorrhoids. something very personal and private. it all of a sudden gets expressed and discussed in the open. why? because i want to talk about me, my problems, my needs. to this day people often , referred to the 70's as the me decade. there's this book called "the culture of narcissism." it's a more academic look at the similar theme. historians have also kind of qualified that, as well. there was also a lot of lyrical -- political activism and community-based activism during this time. but we definitely see changes in
society. greater casualness, jeans, polyester suits, pointy callers. collars, a kind of opening up of society. it had been very buttoned down prior to the 1960's. drug use increases. marijuana increasingly. not just seen in san francisco or new york, but throughout america. it becomes a right of passage for teenagers. there were people supporting the legalization of marijuana, it doubled during this time. by the middle of the decade, cocaine becomes a popular drug, especially among more affluent americans. there are also legal drugs like valium. the idea of self-fulfillment and introspection goes mainstream. a famous book was called " looking out for number one, how to be your best friend." in 1970, phil donahue introduces a
new type of national tv talkshow where one gets on and confesses private sins, shares one's feelings with viewers. it had many imitators. oprah, jerry springer, mari povich. flip on your daytime television , even to this day, and that of peopleening up talking about all types of private things, but now in a private audience, is the child of the transcendental 1970's. medication. yoga becomes popular. more americans are looking to the east, the eastern religions and the rise of new age. remember the counterculture was , putting itself in opposition to mainstream american culture. in this sense, they are looking not at traditional judeo-christian religious values, but looking to the east.
this self-fulfillment that becomes an emphasis in the 70's leads to an emphasis on fitness, health. from hippie to yuppie, the classic caricature of 1980's, young urban professionals. we have a picture of two of the most famous tv stars in the 1970's, farrah fawcett and lee majors. lee majors was the $6 million man. farrah fawcett, many young boys had posters of her in their rooms in the 1970's. "charlie's angels." jogging is what the antiwar tester was of -- antiwar protester was of the 60's. americans are increasingly taking up fitness and health and taking to the roads and jogging. seeing people on the road running would now become a much more common sight. coming out of the
counterculture, we see the rise of natural food movements, which now have become totally mainstream, as you go into supermarkets and seeing rows of organic food. this comes out of this period. it comes out of this counterculture looking for ways to improve one's health. you see the popularity of racquetball, which has kind of declined. i remember playing when i was younger. i don't know if it is popular anymore. it becomes a big sport in the 70's and early 80's. bodybuilding and weightlifting, symbolized by the documentary "pumping iron," with arnold schwarzenegger as the star. it really made him into a star. there is increasing understanding in the 1970's of the harm of smoking. it's when the surgeon general announces smoking is dangerous. smoking ads are banned on television. as part of this move towards
self-fulfillment, self-improvement, looking inward is a move to improve one's health and fitness overall. the sexual revolution begins in the 70's. that's when we really see it flourishing and moving out into mainstream american society. so much of what the 70's is is taking the trends from the 60's and moving that into mainstream america. the joy of sex becomes a national best seller. polls show loosening attitudes toward premarital sex did even extramarital sex. pornography. this is the era when pornography -- there has been pornography for as long as man has existed, but pornography in terms of movies, that is when times square in new york, many of the movie theaters turned over to show porn movies.
"deep throat" is the classic american porno movie of the 1970's. we have clubs in new york, sex clubs. wife swapping becomes more common. there's a very famous incident in baseball history in the early 1970's. two pitchers from the new york yankees in spring training decided they were going to swap wives. one would take the wife of another and the families would switch. one of the couples ended up staying together, the other one didn't. it was a huge scandal in the 1970's. shocking, but still, there was no punishment for the players. i think one of them was traded within the year. there are also changes in divorce law. people got divorced before the 1960's, but you see changes in law, especially with the beginnings of no-fault divorce,
which made it easier for couples to get divorced. they would not have to claim some sort of fault, like someone cheated on them or so forth, they could just simply be incompatible. you see the rise in divorces in america in the 1970's. american family life would become more fractured from the 70's onward. gay rights also comes into bloom in the 1970's. most historians date the rise of the gay rights movement to the riots at stonewall inn new york city in 1969. the next year is the first gay liberation day parade in new york city. there's also a pride parade in los angeles. importantly in 1973, the american psychiatric association takes homosexuality off of its
list of mental disorders. prior to that, it was seen as a psychological problem. states begin to get rid of sodomy laws. not all of them, but some. harvey milk in san francisco is elected in 1977 to the board of supervisors. san francisco becomes a hub of the gay community in the castro district. the rainbow flag is created in 1978. also part of this is the rise of the culture of disco. disco, in terms of clubs, parties around dance music, begins in the gay community in the late 60's and early 1970's. it begins to flourish by the mid-1970's. studio 54 in new york is probably the most quintessential famous discos. there were discos all over. it's a style of music that
becomes popular in the early mid 1970's. probably made most famous and most mainstream by saturday night fever. dance music, mirrored walls, flashing lights people in outrages, -- outrageous outfits, a lot of people using drugs. it's a classic example of personal liberation. freedom from restraint. letting go on the dance floor. the music itself was a blend of african-american culture coming out of black dance music. donna summers, the most famous, or infamous, of the acts was the village people. i think they are even still around to this day. there's also the backlash against disco. when we meet next class, i show you a clip from one of the most infamous backlashes against disco, that happened in chicago at a chicago white sox game.
disco sucks becomes a model for a number of americans. there are underlying cultural tensions in terms of are you a disco or a rock fan? that will tell is often about your background and ideas. the 1970's is also when we see feminism and the women's movement making strides and coming out. you can argue the 70's is the high point of the women's movement. in the 1960's, the book "the feminine mystique" is marked down as one of the most important turning points. a book about book women at home, very much a book of the late 50's and early 60's, about wives and mothers at home who feel something missing in their life. she termed it the problem that has no name.
women read the book in groups and would often read it in groups and recognize those problems in their lives. you begin to get more political action by the late 1960's. the national organization for women is created. you have 2 kinds of women's rights movements. one is a much more middle-class movement, a political movement, like now. it is focused on the political system, things like workplace equality and antidiscrimination. issues like maternity leave and childcare. there's also another more radical group, women's liberation, which takes a much more radical view of politics and of the relationship between the sexes. we see more women moving into the workforce. at the end of the 70's, more than half were working.
another famous book of the time, which is still in print, "our bodies ourselves" comes out of boston. i think it was a professor at emerson who started this. it was a focus on women's health and sexuality. it started off as a little pamphlet, a booklet, it's incredibly popular that by 1973, they are publishing it as a book, a mass-market book. i do not know what edition it is in today. we are seeing these movements of liberation, rights, filtering down and filtering out. in terms of women's rights, the big political issue was the equal rights amendment. it was fairly simple, an amendment to the constitution calling for equality of rights that are equality of rights should not be denied or abridged on account of sex. it passes congress overwhelmingly. a number of states ratify it.
it looks like it will go and easily become an amendment, until political opposition gets formed. the woman who is credited for that is the woman at the top, phyllis, who leads the movement. this movement is tied to the growing conservative leaning political and social movement in the country that will culminate in a reagan's election in 1980. they framed the opposition to e.r.a. around much more traditional gender roles, and argue that this amendment would threaten those roles. her opposition and her organizing will prevent the necessary two thirds of states from ratifying the amendment. there is a time limit in which
the states had to approve, ratify the amendment. they don't meet the deadline. congress extends the deadline to 1982 and it never gets past. -- never gets past. on the bottom is the pro-e.r.a. forces, one of the leaders was a congressman from new york city famous for her hats and political activism. this shows us not only the strengths of the women's movement, but also the limits and the opposition going on, which will foreshadow future political trends in the coming years. one of the famous incidents regarding the women's movement, not necessarily the most important, but sort of symbolic did anyone see the movie "battle , of the sexes" with emma stone and steve carell? i have not seen it yet. bobby riggs was a 55-year-old former tennis star, he had been a tennis star in the 40's.
he thinks there are too many differences between men and women, and no way a woman can beat a man on the tennis court. he also liked to gamble. there was an element of money in this. he says -- he challenges a number of women tennis players to a match. he challenged 29-year-old billie jean king to a televised match, $100,000 to the winner. there are about 90 million people worldwide watching this match. king easily defeats riggs in three straight sets. one would argue riggs was over the hill, not in great shape. there were arguments that he liked to gamble, but he threw the match. i'm not sure that is proven. this is seen as a victory for women over men, especially
riggs, who was obnoxious, vocal in his chauvinism. riggs came to kind of identify with that. do we have questions? feel free to raise your hand at all. we are trying to cover a lot of ground. feel free to raise your hand if you have questions. i have a -- >> i have a question about the 1982 e.r.a. i had that section in america in the 70's. when it was extended to 1982, did it die, or was it ever passed? >> this is to get the requisite states to ratify it. the amendment passed by congress, then it had to go to the individual states to ratify it. two thirds had to ratify it to be a part of the constitution. there was a time limit in which the states needed to adopt it. in 1982, it was the final limit. the number of states, 30 states
or something, >> it never was amended? >> never added to the constitution. >> it is the most proposed amendment in history. people just keep proposing it. >> yes. since then, some states have voted on it. i don't think a qualified -- they would have to go through the process all over again, i'm fairly sure. another interesting part of the 1970's is an increasing emphasis on ethnic identity, racial identity, family roots. today, we call that multiculturalism. it was not called that then, but an increasing evidence on differences. for the decades prior to the 1970's, assimilation was seen as an important social value, especially if you are looking at the children and grandchildren of european immigrants. the notion of putting aside one's path, becoming american
was important. in the 1970's, you see this resurgence of ethnic identity among these groups. if you look to tv or movies prior to the 1970's, not a lot of racial differences, not a lot of ethnic differences, either. now in the 70's, you see more of this. "the godfather" is seen as one of those classics. this is a classic italian of american literature. it comes to the screen and becomes not only one of the greatest movies of all time, but it really comes into american culture, where you have americans identifying with a mobster. he becomes the hero of a story in many ways. this is sort of an overly identified -- heavily ethnic.
other movies, as well. this is also the era of "roots" about finding his african ancestors who came as slaves. the book becomes one of the most popular miniseries of all time. turbo boosts the prominence of genealogy, tracing your family's roots. has anyone ever seen those ancestry.com ads? has anyone ever done one of those? they have become very popular. genealogy is booming. both for whites, blacks, and other ethnic groups. prior to this time, genealogy was for the defendants of the pilgrims, those who came over on the mayflower. it was used as a way -- it was popular in the 19th and early
20th century, you wanted to prove you had ancestors that came over in 1630 or 1640. so old stock protestant nativeborn groups were the groups doing genealogy and set up organizations like the new england historical genealogy society in that day. now in the 1970's, it has become mainstream and populace. all kind of groups now want to know what was grandpa's life over in the old country. where are my african ancestors? what part of africa are they from? what experiences do they have. it's a great interest in family backgrounds as a way of promoting pride in one's own heritage and differences between various racial and ethnic groups become celebrated in that sense.
>> was the emphasis prior to the 1970's? prof. cannato: the issue of is there a link to the breakdown of religious identity and increased in racial identity? i'm not quite sure. certainly there is a time in the 70's where you start to see declining -- we talk about we will talk about that going up, but many protestant religions and catholic churches going down at this time. it could be a substitute for down theuse people road, the identity of most residents up until the 60's or 70's was routed around what church they were from. mostly irish catholic. declined,attendance the irish part of the irish catholic takes prominence and the catholic part goes down. that might be.
another important trend is the rise of the sun belt. if you look at the map of america, the sun belt, no strict definition, but florida, georgia, texas, arizona, california, maybe today including las vegas, in that area of the south and southwest, you can see from the map, population trends of people moving away from what becomes -- if this is the sun belt, what do we call the green part? [inaudible] >> the rust belt or the snow belt. the implies industrialization, the factories closing down. and people now, jobs are starting to open up in the south and the west. because of the prominence of air-conditioning, it becomes a much more pleasant prospect to
live in south florida or arizona or las vegas or parts of texas. to this day, we see the population growth in america really highlighted in those areas. the carolinas, georgia, florida. alabama and mississippi, they are kind of left out. states thatnerally are hugely prosperous or growing, and all around it. what is driving the growth in the sun belt? does anyone know what is driving the growth? >> is some of it based off the movement of industry out of the rust belt and into the south? >> some of it. some of that is moving down to the south. the carolinas get a lot of the textile manufacturing. that's part of it. what else?
>> the prices in new york or boston or chicago were very expensive and you could get things cheaper in texas or florida then you could in new york city? p, housing prices are cheaper, taxes are cheaper. one reason people move to florida is because there is no state income tax. the weather is better. who else is moving down to florida? people arelder flocking down to florida. , it's look at florida often said that the east coast of florida is populated by those coming from new england and new york and the west side is much more midwestern people coming from the midwest down to the west coast. and retirees. what else do you have a lot of in the south? lots of military bases. bases inilitary america, most of them are on the south or the west.
the ones in the north, the ones around us closing down, even though this is not a great time -- think about oil. oil production. the oil industry in places like texas. southern california, aerospace. even factory jobs are attracting people who are leading places like new york and illinois. this is a trend that has continued to this day. the top three states are california, texas and florida. york, like new pennsylvania, ohio, illinois, as the juices, every 10 years lose congressional seats because populations are moving down to the south. it's not that our state population has stayed roughly population growth is so much bigger in the sun belt.
there are so many people moving down there. at the biggest cities in america today, three of them are texas, los angeles, unix, so this is a trend i think that will continue as people continue to move out of the northeast and the midwest, the deindustrialization of the midwest continues, high taxes in the northeast continue to push people out of the northeast. another interesting and odd the renewedrica, southern culture, white southern culture in the 70's. it's interesting because if you think about the 50's and 60's and you think about american politics, american views, society, when looked at the 60's in the south, it was mostly looking at the civil rights movement and especially kind of the white opposition to civil
rights that we saw in the 50's and early 1960's. especially in television, you get to focus more on the civil rights movement. you see more of an ugly side of america on television every day and how whites were treating african-americans, highlighting the jim crow laws of the self. ends, we getcrow this renewed interest in the south and southern influences begin to seep into american society, something that we also see to this day. southern rock becomes popular, the band lynyrd skynyrd, the song sweet home alabama which is an answer to neil young's song southern man which is a very critical song about white southerners and their opposition to the civil rights. lynyrd skynyrd is the answer to
that. the southern man does not need neil young around anymore. praising alabama, praising george wallace. other bands like the allman brothers, marshall tucker band. country rock, the eagles are not really a southern band but there's a lot of rock music that becomes kind of country a little bit. country music has been around a long time. it was known in the 50's as hillbilly music. now, it hits mainstream. part of it is the outlaw culture. , ifink that's one reason you are going to explain why the interest in the south and the popularity of this southern culture, i think it has something to do with that of theualism, that idea outlaw culture, smokey and the bandit, dukes of hazard, these are rebels. and rebels in the south have a very specific meaning
in terms of confederacy and the civil war. what in the 70's, it has a different terminology. rebelling against the system. there is an appeal to that. and more mainstream figures, people like dolly parton. music is all of it. if popular not just in the south, but in the north and everywhere. but i'm my cup of tea always amazed at the number of people who live in the north who are country music fans and you start to see that in the 70's. , goingr driving, nascar back to prohibition today. hugely popular, not my cup of tea, not what i spend my time on, but you see nascar fans not just in the south but you see nascar fans all over. new hampshire, pennsylvania. this is the influence of the south.
i mentioned, probably one of the big american movie stars of the 1970's, burt reynolds. a former college football player from florida, smokey and the , anyone remembercb? i have a board game from the game, ake a cb board form of radio communication between truckers. smokey and the bandit helped to popularize that and here you rebelurt reynolds as the with jackie gleason, the cop. and the dukes of hazard which premiered in 1979. the confederate flag in the background, general lee. one of the more popular shows of the late 70's, 80's. now, being mainstream in american society, now no longer
meeting racial oppression or jim crow, but representing a much broader rebellion against authority figures. i think that's how this is seeping into american culture. south always influenced american culture, always had a very important place, especially if you look at our literature. people like flannery o'connor, faulkner.-- americans are really beginning to absorb this there, very specific southern culture. rights, weto civil saw upswings in terms of women's rights and gay rights, but civil rights is a little bit of a different story in the 1970's. i will also put this powerpoint up on the blackboard. after the civil rights act, after the voting rights act, the
question is what comes next. and the supreme court begins to take up hearings on certain issues, many of them having to do with schools. one that does not have to do with schools has to do with what kind ofd tots can an employer give potential employees? testing, what kind of requirements can they make? can they require a high school degree? and the plaintiff had argued that the duke power company is where using a high school requirement, that was adversely impacting african-american athletes. african-americans had lower rates of high school graduation. and the court argued that any kind of requirement has to be essential, irreplaceable and directly related to a job. impact, if disparate
some requirement impacted the races differently, that could be seen as discriminatory. now you see we are getting into much more complicated territory, we are beyond the issue of segregation on city buses or segregated schools or libraries. we are getting into complicated issues about how employers hire. this is a case where there was no evidence of outright ofcrimination but the use these tests could be seen as discriminatory if they impacted applicants differently. also, theof schools supreme court is going to take up these issues. the board of education, 1971, supreme court says bussing to achieve desegregation is constitutional. you can bus students across the district in order to fully desegregate the school system.
that will be important in a couple of minutes when we go up to talk about that. the case versus denver look at northern cities. part, charlotte is in the south, a denver is in the west. it did not have jim crow laws, it did not have segregation, but they are arguing that the schools in denver were defective segregated, -- de facto segregation. the supreme court said that a city could not say we did not have specifically black and white schools, so therefore we can't be under a desegregation order, the supreme court said yes, that could come under a court order, which is what we will see in boston. in 1974, the courts put a limit on this and put the limit on bussing.
so here we have a case in detroit of the northern city, a northern city that in the 60's and 70's experiences white flight out of the city, becomes majority african-american, rules are heavily african-american. the whites that are in detroit schools tend to be in mostly white schools. was let's busn children across the city line, let's bus african-american children across the line to the suburbs and white children from the suburbs into the city. this metropolitan desegregation order would link the suburban schools with the urban schools as a way to balance the schools racially. and it is here the supreme court says no. do that, these are separate school districts and a court cannot order.
whenever, schooling is always done, a look schooling at the local level. locally controlled. they are run by local boards of education. and the court says we are not going to destroy that, we are going to create a metropolitan school district. and that's going to put a limit on what courts can demand in terms of bussing. the other case dealing with african-american civil rights is in 1978. a white applicant to university of california medical school, he thatejected, he claimed minority applicants with lower scores were admitted and this deals with affirmative action. the supreme court in one of its most convoluted decisions, and i won't even get into the details, but basically it was four people
voting one way, four people voting the other way and justice decisionth the loan that was able to garner five votes. and in there, he was allowed to but thedical school court said that ghouls could use factor in looking at applicants. however, the rationale for that was not compensatory for past discrimination, it was to benefit the diversity of the student body. and this is something that the court has continued to use as a race in termssing of school applications. this is a way schools, for educational purposes need to have a diverse student body so in that case, you can use race as one factor. we are in the middle now just
across from the river, harvard is in court, being challenged by asian-american students that they do use race, but not as a ,lus factor in discrimination opening up the harvard admissions process. but this is tricky. we are moving from earlier civil rights which barred the use of in terms of job discrimination, hiring, schools. we are now getting into race conscious remedies like bussing, like affirmative action. and it is here where the legal issue becomes much trickier in much of what kind of, how can government use race as a factor? canracial quotas in jobs, one say that for a company to have x percentage of average americans or minorities, do we do that?
the other problem is political, which is that once we get to the issues of affirmative action and bussing, we get greater and greater political opposition. not just from the south, but also in the north as well. and in boston is one of the most famous examples, 1970's, the controversy over school busing to achieve racial desegregation. buses rollingool into self boston with african-american schoolchildren coming over from roxbury. the quick background on the case, the racial imbalance act of 1965 was a state law, which said that any school that has was than 60% minorities deemed out of balance, imbalanced, and therefore needed to be desegregated. there was one problem with the law. -- if the school is one under percent white, that
was not out of balance. what that meant was the only schools that were in violation of this law were boston schools and i think a couple of schools in springfield. it was only toward city schools. and as we get into the 70's, supreme court said you can't bus across city lines, it has to be within the city. program which comes up during this time as well, which is a voluntary program in which african-american children in boston are bust the suburban schools. suburban schools agreed to accept a certain number of students every year. but that is a voluntary student busing plan. is fighting the committee during the late 60's, early 70's arguing that austin city schools are segregated, mattapan, in roxbury, those areas become gradually
more african-american, fewer whites in those neighborhoods. whites are living in places like east boston, south boston. arguing that the boston school committee is jittering around with the neighbor and school district lines in order to keep schools majority white. they are playing around with feeder schools, what schools feed into middle schools in order to achieve as many white students and majority white schools. 1974, a federal court case, judge arthur garrity orders that the boston schools are segregated and orders bussing to desegregate schools. he basically takes control over boston schools. he begins to redraw district lines to decide who will be boston where. there are a couple of problems,
one is that because white flight has been happening in the 60's and early 70's, there are fewer and fewer students. another problem, the most famous boston, he paired south with roxbury and bust groups of students into these schools. and this created a lot of tension, especially in south boston as they bitterly opposed the bussing decision. know,boston, some of you , very close-knit community proud of its community, proud of its heritage, not want to be told that they had to either accept black students or that white students had to go over to roxbury. escort, veryolice high tension. and there's a growing feeling as that white bostonians,
especially working-class bostonians, why are they made to bear the brunt of integration of schools when mostly white suburban schools are exempt from this? and we see that the white working class. the burden for this which only increased their anger and their opposition to it. you have here the group created in boston to oppose bussing, restore our alienated rights. stop forced busing. is a famousight photo to come out of this, one of the most famous shows, the soiling of old glory. is today athe right prominent architect involved in civic affairs in boston. if you look at the photo, it looks like he is taking the flag and is about to spear him and
the man on the right is holding him so that he can steer him. actually come the picture is not quite the whole story. the man on the right is trying to hold him up as he tripped and was trying to hold him up. picture, you see the racial divide between white bostonians, working-class bostonians and africans americans and the anger that it created. the boston schools will be under the judges control until the 1980's, 1983 is when he turned back control over the schools. garrity is involved in a lot of very small decisions in schools, one of the more famous ones in south boston where he's deciding how many walls the gymnasium should order. but more importantly he's looking at teachers, what
teachers are being hired, pushing for more minority andhers to be hired, bussing will continue in boston until just a few years ago when officially it was ended. [inaudible] >> i don't know. not like it is today. i don't know what the law was, whether you could keep a child home in the 1970's. the options were, and many white send your kidss, the catholic schools, there are a lot of catholic schools, that became such a big option that the archbishop of austin had to boston county schools would accept no transfer students anymore. if you were starting in kindergarten that is ok but you could not transfer from this great to escape bussing. but a lot of white students just
left boston. or moved elsewhere in boston. does this larger implementation of race consciousness, does that have an -- noton the resurgence directly, and i don't think that a lot of people would say that it was, but did it have some kind of effect on the resurgence of interest in the confederacy? perhaps in some ways, there was. but remember, the number of people who were affected by busing was pretty small. general, since the implementation of affirmative action programs. >> i think that probably is part of it. it's a directink relationship. it's more like a broad cultural.
one of the things that's interesting about the anti-bussing movement, there is a very good book about it, how much the anti-bussing groups use civil rights tactics to oppose bussing. protest, citizens and there is a great photo of an anti-bussing protester with a peace medallion. the antiauthority movement, this broader feeling of antiauthority goes down to the decision because, who are you to judge higher authorities who come into our community and tell us where my kids should go to school? we are not listening to you. that authority is going to impact this and broadly speaking, this southern culture, this outlaw culture, this rubble culture. it south boston residents become
nascar fans? i don't know, i don't think its direct or anything like that, but it's in the culture. intentional that the affluent communities were left out? did they make a conscious choice that they were not going to have to be bussed? >> the supreme court said you could not force them. the original law in 1965 exempted them because it only looked at schools that were 50% or more minority, it did not say a school that was 90% white was out of bounds. that way, most suburban legislators voted for it, they supported it. it impacted the suburbs, they would probably have not voted for it. so i was curious about -- i looked it up when we were on the southern culture's slide, i was
looking at southern poverty law actinggraphs showing an as monument statues, things like that. high it was not abnormally , in the 60's in comparison, it becomes the civil rights movement, it's like five times as high. the earliest one was the foundation of the naacp. >> exactly. yes, as a way of putting up confederate monuments as a way of expressing support for jim crow and your opposition for desegregation. let's move to new york. because 1970 is another crucial basically, i will tell a complicated story as quickly as i can. new york city almost went bankrupt.
the financial capital, wall street could not pay its bills and came that close to going to bankruptcy. why? historians argue about this often. a combination of the impact of the economic recession really hit new york. new york loses a couple hundred thousand jobs during this time. same time, going back to the 60's which had been a good time economically. york has a city income tax, loss of revenue coming in the 60's, but they also increase city programs. there's greater demand for city programs, greater demand for .elfare new york city has its own hospitals, hospital costs are going up during this time. new york is becoming slightly poorer. , whitewhite flight middle-class, upper middle class residents are leaving the city.
that impacts negatively the tax base. people who remain tend to be slightly poorer, greater demand for social services. what the cityservices. what the city does, they had done this in the early 1960's, a lot of borrowing. there is nothing wrong with that per se. how do you think many these buildings are built? borrowing. there is nothing wrong with that per se. the city borrowed a lot and a lot of its bonds were short term. during this time, interest rates are going up. what ends up happening in 1975 is the banks are not confident enough in new york city to learn --lend them anymore money. by the way these notes are due , at the end of the month. what happened is new york state takes over the fiscal control of the city. they create the emergency financial control board to take over the budgeting. they create another organization
called mack that sells bonds. they were able to raise money that way. the city could not raise money. it leads to what has been called the era of austerity. type budgets. new york city has to cut its budget. having said that, city budget since the mid-1960's had gone up very dramatically. hiring of city workers had gone up dramatically. they were going to be cut after 1975 and city workers, police, fire, all down the road, and you will see that impact daily life in new york. the parks had already been in bad shape. places like central park, they get worse after the fiscal crisis when there is not enough money to upkeep the parks. the city will continue to hemorrhage residents, there will be a net loss of one million residents during the 1970's. more importantly, for new york
city, there is the culture of new york, the social welfare culture going back to 1930's, created an urban safety net, free city college. the city had its own hospitals. support for that will increase in this era of austerity. the idea was the city spends too much money. the famous headlines for the city dropped dead, when new york had turned to president ford for money. initially, ford said not, we -- said no, we will not lend you money. you got into this on your own. we will not lend you money. hence the headline. as a turns out a few weeks later, ford would really some funds for new york city afterwards. there are bigger problems in new york as well. in 1977, there is a blackout in the summer. massive looting in neighborhoods, especially poor neighborhoods in new york.
anyone seen the book where the movie of "the bronx is burning"? the dodgers are playing the yankees in the bronx. outside the stadium, there are fires going. the bronx have seen, dating back to the late 1960's, much of the south bronx was affected by arson. you see rows of burned out abandoned buildings in the bronx. in 1977, president jimmy carter goes to charlotte street in the bronx to survey the urban damage. it became dara gore for politicians to go here to see a sign of urban decay. reagan will go in 1980. on the right is the mayor. on a positive note, that area where carter is now looks very different today. small single-family homes, a very nice area. this was rebuilt in the 1980's and early 1990's.
crime in new york, but also nationwide becomes a very serious issue. in new york, the infamous son of sam killings in 1976 and 1977. david berkowitz who was the son of sam killer, killed six people, wounded seven others. he attacked mostly young couples. this is what makes serial killers tick. this is a question we ask ourselves today. here was a classic case of a man who was frustrated, did not do well with women, harbored hatred of women. the satanic cult, the dog, yeah. there was a side story about a satanic cult, some people have argued there were other people involved in the shooting besides him. the story is he acted alone. he was kind of a disturbed
individual. yonk ved -- he lived in kers. his killings were all in new york city. crime itself in new york dramatically increases. looking at murder rates helps tell the story, although if we hold robbery rates, car theft rates, they will be the same. 1960, 482 murders, 1970, 1100 murders. 1980, 1800 murders. on a city that is much smaller, 10% to 15% smaller than it had been 20 years earlier. the murder rate will go as high as 2100 a year in 1990. today, to give you a sense, murders in new york are in the 300's. it is a much bigger city. the declining crime rates -- we will see that in boston as well, most big cities. this period from the early 1960's down to the early 1990's, is a period of study rate, especially in urban areas, of urban crime.
we see two of the famous movies the bottom left was death wish. ,that just got remade with bruce willis. the original with charles bronson takes place in new york. a man's family was murdered. it says "vigilante, city style, judge, jury, and executioner." he's taking the law into his own hands to deal with criminals. more famously is "taxi driver." 1976 to robert de niro, who is again a disturbed loner. but more complicated. he tries to save jodie foster who is a young prostitute. it is filmed on location in new york in 1975, in the summer. these films are filmed in new york, you can feel what is going on in new york. you can feel the tension and the problems. when you watch "taxi driver" you can sense that. you can see the dirty streets,
you can see the graffiti. and you can see how the city is pushing this man who probably already is not stable to begin with, pushing him to the edge. but, at the same time all of this is happening, if you look at new york, there is stuff going on under as well. one thing that is happening is the creation of hip-hop music and culture. which is occurring in the bronx in the 1970's, the same time you have arson, high crime rates. people like africa mumbada and others are creating the style of music in big block parties and the bronx. it is not until the 1980's that it will seep into the broader culture. graffiti becomes part of that as well. one of the complaints about new york and other big cities in the 1970's and 1980's was the graffiti everywhere.
on subways, on buildings, on bridges. and beginning in the 1990's, new york city made a great effort to clean up the graffiti. to clean up the city. you see here, we now know graffiti artists, and there is a greater understanding of graffiti art. it is linked to hip-hop culture. the other thing going on in new york is in lower manhattan at a club called cbgb's which is where bands, talking heads, blondie, television, the roma -- ramones are playing in this club which will usher in the era of punk, new wave, college alternative, whatever in the 1970's. all of these cultural things are going on underneath that were not readily apparent at the time but we can see today. going back, broadly speaking, we
can also see the rise of a conservative movement in america. often started with william f. buckley, the creation of national review. this journal dedicated to conservative thought, pushing and opposing new deal liberalism. barry goldwater 1964, runs , against lbj, loses and a landslide, but he runs as an kind of ideological libertarian conservative against government programs. he is a hawk. he is also opposed to civil rights law. that is a complicated story in many ways. but goldwater, in 1964, his loss puts an end to the conservative movement. but the events of the late 1960's going into the 1970's will provide more fodder for the republican party. kevin phillips in 1969 writes a book called "the emerging republican majority." he looks at the sun belt, the white south, blue-collar whites
in the north and says, these will be part of a future republican majority and he turns , out to be right. nixon's silence majority speech which we have talked about was part of that. this distrust of institution this anti-authority feeling, , this greater emphasis on individualism will help fuel political conservatism. ironically because of its criticisms of government, of big government. reagan will come into office in 1981 and he will say in his inaugural that the problem is government. government is the problem. this belief that government is not effective, does not do the job well is fueled in part by this distrust of institutions that we see coming from the 1970's. we talked last time of what else is driving the conservatism. prop 13 and the politics of taxes. the rise of the moral majority.
the increasing number of evangelical protestants. as mainline churches decline, evangelical protestantism is on the rise. roe v. wade in 1973. we will talk about that on thursday. it puts abortion -- turns abortion into a political issue. northern white ethnic democrats begin to support republicans like nixon. they do not necessarily leave the democratic party but they are more likely to vote for republican candidates. they will be known as reagan democrats. in foreign policy, and we will talk about this incoming classes, there is a backlash against detente with the ussr and a belief that the u.s. needs to rebuild its military and re-challenge the soviet union. some former democrats who are hawkish on foreign policy will move to the republican party. these are called neoconservatives. we are seeing in the 1970's and
end of a new deal coalition, the birth of the reagan coalition with traditional republican voters, farmers, and in addition, evangelical protestants and southern whites. in 1964, when he signs the civil rights act, lyndon johnson was alleged to have said that upon finding it, he handed over the south to the republican party. the democrats -- the south did -- had been solidly democrat going back to the civil war. it is more complicated than that. going down to the late 1970's and early 1980's, a majority of congressional southerners were still democrats. but as we see over time, over the decade, down to today, the south -- there are exceptions today, had became increasingly republican. at the same time, the democratic party is changing. there is a new democratic majority, some people argue.
a de-emphasis -- let's forget about the old labor unions. forget about the political machines. focusing on minorities, as well as college educated white liberals. the watergate babies are the congressmen and women elected in 1974 in reaction to watergate. they are the new style politicians. they are liberal, upper middle class, college-educated, the old -- a different constituency from the old democratic party. finally, what does it mean? what is the age of limits mean? it is the end of postwar optimism. the political fragmentation and polarization in our politics. the weakening of the american military. the deindustrialization we see in the economy. the beginnings of economic inequality and insecurity. and the possibility of limited natural resources that we saw with the oil crisis. yet, there is an increasing emphasis on personal freedoms and rights in the 1970's. there is expanding opportunities for minorities and women.
there is a culture flourishing in the 1970's. disco, hip-hop, punk. sell -- the golden era of american film. steve jobs, steve wozniak in 1976 start apple computers. there they are working in their garage. bill gates in 1975 will start microsoft. no limits there. these mostly young men working in anonymity in the 1970's, building, creating, starting, the technological revolution that will upgrade impact down to our time today. i think the age of limits, we have to put a qualification on there because we will see in the beginning of the 1980's, vast changes in american society and economics. thank you very much. [applause] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2019] >> listen to lectures in history on the go by streaming our
podcast anywhere, anytime. you are watching american history tv, only on c-span3. wynn is the director of interpretation at the clara barton's missing soldiers office. he talks about the life of clear barton, who worked as a field nurse during the civil war and her the nickname "angel of the battlefield." he discusses barton's inspiration for creating the missing soldier's office as a way to help people locate loved ones who have gone missing during the war. this talk was part of a seminar cohosted by longwood university in farmville, virginia, and appomattox courthouse national park. >> good evening, everyone. welcome to the clara barton missing soldier's office medium. my name is jake wynn