I have to admit, nothing really grinds my gears quite like a conversation about the sixties. This is mainly because of a tactic, and yes I regard it as a tactic, of those who were “there” in the sixties to act as if you can’t understand the era unless you too were there.
As a youngster who had teenage brothers and sisters who were “there” at the time, I have the perspective I have and then have spent years now trying to engage others on their sixties perspective. It’s not always easy and that seems to be by design.
Here is the start of your normal sixties-type conversation, shared from YouTube. I’ll add to this as it goes…
- this from a guy who was born in 1960..so by the time the hippie movement had passed its frenzied peak in 1969 he was only 9 yrs old..give me a break…if you werent there you dont know anything
- Spare me, you just talk to the people that were there. And when you do, and press them on what exactly about the sixties was too complex to “get”, by and large they’ll admit the real problem is most people were too stoned to understand it themselves…
- i dont share your cynical view of the hippie movement…but i agree with you that drugs became a problem right away. I was there and i live in a community of hippies to this day. Everyone has their own story of what it was all about and many individuals did know exactly what it was all about ..but it wasnt about the military creating a counter culture movement to further the aims of the military industrial complex by making it easy for rock stars to succeed. That is pure fantasy…that is tabloid journalism by someone who really wasnt there
- I’m actually not at all cynical of the hippie movement and I think the fact that so many younger people try to understand it is out of respect. If anything, I’m cynical about the notion that the sixties can’t be articulated to anyone who wasn’t part of it or that other generations didn’t have experiences that would allow them to relate once explained, if that makes sense. Its kind of a sore spot among younger people that have been getting told for a lifetime they couldn’t get it if they weren’t in the room…I’ve talked with people who arrogantly said you can’t possibly get it and have talked with others that I feel explained their perspective of the era quite well. I don’t agree with the MI conclusions myself but appreciate all of the information he brought to light.
- the 60s rennaissance of youthful idealism as a social movement is a perennial occurance throughout recorded history…..some excellent work on the true roots of the hippie movement can easily be found online…it traces the hippie movement back to Europe and Asia and in particular Germany and India… Very infuential was Germany which saw an exodus of emigrants to America..These ideals can be easily articulated to todays youth and they accept it with glee….but the actual joyful experience of the 60s rennaissance is hard to talk about in todays depressing environment….the idealism however can be experienced by anyone and is not the copywrited property of the 60s hippies….
That actually ended fairly well!