A Turf of Their Own: The Experiments and Contradictions of 1960s Utopianism

TriCollege Digital Repository

Title: A Turf of Their Own: The Experiments and Contradictions of 1960s Utopianism
Author: Ivy-Taylor, David
Advisor: Krippner, James
Department: Haverford College. Dept. of History
Type: Thesis (B.A.)
Issue Date: 2011
Abstract: After WWII, the world had to adjust to new technologies, new scientific concepts, new political realities, and new social standards. While America was economically wealthy after the war, it still had to deal with extremely difficult social and cultural challenges. Due to these new aspects of life, there were increasing differences in both the interests and values of children and their parents, what we have learned to call the "generation gap". The "generational gap" between the youth culture and their parents meant a polarizing society, each hating and completely misunderstanding the other. This eventually resulted in a highly political youth culture that was laterally opposed to the government. Through isolation, the counterculture began to develop new philosophies and new ways of thinking, and a huge part of that philosophy was the pursuit of a "Good Society", a utopian dream for world peace. This element of counterculture society can be seen in the real world in events like the Woodstock Music Festival, in which over half a million people gathered together in common pursuit of this utopian dream. However, through the construction of this utopia, the counterculture set their expectations too high, and were dramatically shocked when the concert at Altamont only four months later ended in total disaster. In this way, we can see how 1960s utopianism-—which defined the decade--ultimately doomed itself to failure.
Subject: United States -- Social conditions -- 1960-1980
Subject: Conflict of generations -- United States -- History -- 20th century
Subject: Utopias -- History -- 20th century
Terms of Use:
Permanent URL:

Files in this item

Files Description Size Format
2011IvyTaylorD.pdf Thesis (Haverford users only) 3.295Mb PDF
2011IvyTaylorD(Abridged).pdf Thesis 2.260Mb PDF
2011IvyTaylorD_release.pdf **Archive Staff Only** 81.53Kb PDF


Ivy-Taylor, David. "A Turf of Their Own: The Experiments and Contradictions of 1960s Utopianism". 2011. Available electronically from

This item appears in the following Collection(s) Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as


Advanced Search


My Account