The Hippie Revolution and Communication Today
The word “hippie” usually conjures a specific image in most peoples’ heads: unkempt, young folks dressed in bellbottom jeans and tie dye t-shirts with flowers in their hair. The term “hippie movement”, then, might invoke images of these flower children passing a joint around to one another while listening to The Grateful Dead, protesting the war, speaking about peace and love and criticizing The Man.
The hippie movement, however, was much more than that. And the people deemed “hippies” were much more than pot smoking libertarians. These young people were the firebrand of a revolution that would change opinions on war and civil rights as well as have a significant impact on communication in so many ways. I.What is the Hippie Movement?
a.What is a hippie?
i.“Hippie” comes from the word hipster: Someone who rejects established culture and promotes liberalism in politics and lifestyle ii.Young, predominantly white, intellectuals lobbying for change b.Events leading up to the revolution
i.Cold war looming, weapons of mass destruction always a threat- leads to radicalization of political culture. Separation between political left and right. ii.Black oppression opposition begins. Rosa Parks brings public attn. to the matter. iii.Inspires people all over the US. Especially university students. Thus Civil Rights movement iv.Foundation of the SDS (Students for a Democratic Society) in 1959 v.Movement reached it’s peak in 1965 and fizzled by 1970
c.What was the purpose of the revolution?
i.Port Huron Statement: Founding manifesto of the SDS
ii.Hippies wanted change. Ideas included open sexuality, peace and love, antiviolence iii.Protested the Vietnam War, also strong in the Civil Rights movement, free speech movement. II.Communication- Mediums and messages of the Hippie Movement a.Clothing and Physical Looks
i.Clothing was a big part of hippie identification. Also communicated messages. ii.Buttons with peace signs and other messages
iii.Tie dye, wide skirts, headbands and long hair
iv.These looks were not accepted by older people- thus distinguishing hippies from the rest of society b.Protests and Marches
i.University students organized sit ins to protest the draft ii.Used the protests as mediums to peacefully protest the war and against nuclear violence iii.Also used protests to oppose segregation
i.Songs with messages against the war- some used satire to criticize issues such as the Vietnam war III.Changes in communication since the hippie movement