Archive for the ‘generaltional divide’ Category

Dr. Joanne Meyerowitz – Rethinking Sexuality in the 1950′s US

Wednesday, March 13th, 2013

As I sat listening to Dr. Meyerowitz talk about the different views of sexual freedom (or lack there of) in the 1950′s, I couldn’t help but think about how relevant it was to our class this semester. Just today we were talking about the Cold War and America’s vision of containing communism and low and behold Dr. Meyerowitz discusses how the sexual conservatives used the Cold War concept of containment along with conservatives appealing to morality, law, social order, and religion to justify their philosophy regarding sex. Conservatives thought of sexual freedom as a vice and felt that it needed to be policed by the state and/or nation. Liberals, however, had a different outlook on sexual expression. They felt as if sexual expression was healthy, fun, and natural. They also viewed it as a symbol of democracy and freedom. It was also an example of the generational divide or gap that the African-Americans experienced in their fight for civil rights (SCLC vs SNCC) being experienced during the sexual movement in the 1950′s. The introduction of pin ups and Playboy, the shift from having sex with prostitutes to masturbation via pornography that made it so that people “touching themselves instead of others” was a glaring example of how the youth was different from the previous generations. It also added fuel to the already growing youth subculture involving drugs, rock and roll, and free speech in America. Sexual expression was like rock and roll in that it provided freedom and fun per the liberals but was full of vice and rebellion according to the conservatives. The overreaction and paranoia involved in the fight against rock and roll, equal rights in the Jim Crow South and Cold War communists also made it’s way under the sexual freedom umbrella. Appeals to morality and ties to religion weren’t enough to stop the liberals from fighting for their right to sexual freedom, however, and the results steamrolled their way through history and are still felt in our society today. Just ask Hugh Hefner how the sexual freedom he was able to obtain worked out for him and his Girls Next Door. (355)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jfQoPapnv

 

Nuts and Bolts of College Writing revision:

original:

Appeals to morality and ties to religion weren’t enough to stop the liberals from fighting for their right to sexual freedom, however, and the results steamrolled their way through history and are still felt in our society today.

correction: (punctuation & flow)

However, appeals to morality and ties to religion weren’t enough to stop the liberals from fighting for their right to sexual freedom and the results steamrolled their way through history and are still felt in our society today.

Discussion question:

What do you think would have happened to the sexual freedom movement if the Supreme Court hadn’t overturned laws against sex acts and relationships?