American culture in the 1950s by Martin Halliwell

By Martin Halliwell

This publication presents a stimulating account of the dominant cultural kinds of Nineteen Fifties the US: fiction and poetry; theatre and function; movie and tv; tune and radio; and the visible arts. via exact observation and centred case reviews of influential texts and occasions - from Invisible guy to West aspect tale, from Disneyland to the Seattle World's reasonable, from Rear Window to The americans - the booklet examines the way modernism and the chilly battle provide frames of reference for figuring out the trajectory of postwar tradition. the 2 middle goals of this quantity are to chart the altering complexion of yank tradition within the years following international struggle II and to supply readers with a severe research of 'the 1950s'. The booklet presents an highbrow context for drawing close Fifties American tradition and considers the ancient influence of the last decade on fresh social and cultural advancements

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However, Packard was not alone in his position, with critics like C. 34 Some commentators have called Packard a conspiracy theorist in his deep suspicion of advertising, but certain aspects of his work, such as adverts targeting children, political campaigning and subliminal advertising, predate the interest in the growth of corporate control of the media in the 1980s and 1990s. Ideas If the 1950s was a decade of new American experiences, then at first glance it also seems to be a decade lacking in any major ideas – certainly in comparison to the more radical politics of the 1960s.

Taking the lead from the postwar boom in fashion, in which the vogue for particular styles of clothing changed much more rapidly than in previous decades (for example, Dior’s New Look range from the late 1940s), domestic appliances such as cookers, televisions, showers and refrigerators had begun to be similarly marketed. 27 A far cry from the depressed and doomed salesman Willy Loman in Arthur Miller’s play Death of a Salesmen (1949), these jobs seemed in tune with an upwardly mobile mid-1950s, in which the threat of over-productivity encouraged companies to invest heavily in advertising and market research ($53 was spent on targeting each individual in 1955).

While some feared that Kennan’s recommendation to hold back the spread of communism would be a wild-goose chase, containment policy informed many of the political decisions in the late 1940s: the Marshall Plan to bring aid to war-torn Europe; the formation of NATO in 1949; and the decision in 1950 to help the South Koreans push back the advancing armies of North Korea and China, leading to over two years of skirmishing on the 39th Parallel. Fears of an attack close to home did not come to a head until the Cuban Missile crisis of 1962, but the sense that spies and informers had already secreted themselves into influential institutions fed anticommunist fears through the first half of the decade.

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