Thursday 6 December 2012

Infinite Opportunity


     The "swinging sixties" was a time of many social changes. During this time, civil rights movements, decolonization  women’s liberation, gay & lesbian liberation, green and peace movements occurred.Issues such as pornography, marriage breakdowns, single parent families, welfare state dependency, drugs and youth crime all developed in the"permissiveness" of the sixties. The baby boomer generation, had a great desire for personal freedom. People challenged social practices, and liked the ideas of hippies of free love and free thinking. Drug use and sexual experimentation was popular and was inspired by new musical artists like the Beatles.

Martin Luther King Junior's historic speech

     The fifties instituted black civil rights. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that segregated schools were unconstitutional the 1954 case, Brown v. Board of Education. In Montgomery, Alabama, 1955 black citizens boycotted city buses to protest against race discrimination in the city’s bus service. 
In the sixties, the black civil rights movement picked up its pace. Leaders such as King and Malcolm X became prominent. Organizations against black civil rights, such as the KKK organized many strikes, marches, rallies, riots, and violent confrontations. In the Late 1960s government unions began to grow apart as the number of strikes increased.

    Several years of casual racism escalated to violence during the Notting Hill riots of 1958. Several minor acts of violence led to "200-strong mob rampaging through the streets of the slum of Notting Hill armed with weapons, including sticks and butcher's knives, shouting "Down with the niggers" and "Go home you black bastards"." on the night of August 30, 1958. The riot lasted three days and many people, black and white, were injured or killed before the riot died down and got subdued by the bobbies. The Notting Hill riots of '58 are some of the worst racial violence Britain has ever seen. Notting Hill is now an upscale neighbourhood.


     The Space Race was a race between the two superpowers of the Cold War, the United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics . The rivalry between the two countries created during the second world war carried on, as they fought to establish technological supremacy in their military and later, in their aeronautics and astronautics.The Space Race was propelled by civilian and military goals as well as political propaganda within and outside the countries. With the invention of the space suit that allowed man to survive in space, Archigram was inspired by the minimal bubble suit that could sustain the life of a man. The fast development of science and technology, was the cause of Archigrams extreme futuristic architectural ideas and served as inspiration for their projects.


     After the Second World War, Britain accumulated a huge debt to US and suffered a large trade deficit as well as loss of colonies and power. It became cheaper to buy cars overseas, and was a time of rampant inflation, industrial confrontation and mass unemployment. People lived in poor economic conditions and dealt with it with their freedom of expression causing a social reform.