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Contemporary United States History, 1940-Present
General Course Information
Schedule of Classes and Reading Assignments
Lecture Summaries
Review Sheets
Writing Assignment

Image Gallery Part 2

October 5:
Elvis Presley represented the new wave of rock n' roll in the mid-50s
the Milton Berle Texaco Star Theater and I Love Lucy were two hit shows in the early years of television
television ratings from the early and late 50s-- variety shows, comedies, and westerns dominated the ratings
some thought that Nixon's appearance during televised debates swung a close election in Kennedy's favor
the 1960 election, and the county-by-county results (Kennedy counties in red, Nixon counties in blue)
Kennedy discovered that there was no "missile gap" disadvantage with the Soviets
the Peace Corps were an essestial element of JFK's plan to appeal to developing nations during the Cold War
maps of the Caribbean and the "Bay of Pigs" landing zone (1961)
the Bay of Pigs failure weakened Kennedy's hand at a summit with Khrushchev
the aftermath of the Berlin Wall-- "a wall is a hell of a lot better than a war"
high-altitude U2 and low-level surveillance photos of the Soviet missile bases in Cuba, 1962
the Cuban Missile Crisis-- the closest to "high noon" during the Cold War
the close escape of the missile crisis prompted more calls for coexistence and a nuclear test ban treaty with the Soviets

September 28:
the 1956 election, and the county-by-county results (Stevenson counties in brown or beige, Eisenhower counties in blue)
a graph of Eisenhower's approval ratings during his presidency
the postwar "baby boom"-- the birth rate rose and produced demand for children's items (the picture is what an infant required in its first year)
the suburban population increased dramatically after the war
the "new" suburbs-- "moving day" populated the newly built, uniformly designed housing developments such as Levittown
in the 1950's, population growth was concentrated in the "sunbelt" states
the rise of television created new products, and movie theaters attempted to compete
separate drinking fountains, mandated in many states by the "separate but equal" principle
even 10 years after the Brown v Board of Education decision (1954), desegregation had made little headway in most of the South
Jackie Robinson received death threats after breaking baseball's color line (1947), but within 12 years all major league teams had integrated
Rosa Parks being arrested for violating bus segregation policy, and then riding on a newly desegregated bus after the Montgomery boycott's success
the first of the lunch counter sit-ins, Greensboro, NC (1960)

September 21:
a "scoring" of the Cold War, mid-50s
a pro-Rosenbergs pamphlet, and a "blacklisting" journal
a graph of Truman's approval ratings during his presidency

the Eisenhower campaign, 1952
Eisenhower pledged to "go to Korea" if elected
Stevenson on the campaign trail, and artifacts of his campaign
the 1952 election, and the county-by-county results (Stevenson counties in brown or beige, Eisenhower counties in blue)

emphasis on nuclear deterrence produced civil defense appeals and private bomb shelters
brinksmanship-- "don't worry, I can always pull you back in time!"
the popular image of Ike as president
"Carry on, lads!"-- the downfall of McCarthy did not mean the end of anti-communist politics
reactions to the Soviet launch of Sputnik -- "So Russia launched a satellite, but has it made cars with fins yet?"
the Army was sent to Little Rock to enforce desegregation, 1957

September 14:

despite prewar distrust, alliance with the Soviets was stressed during WWII
post-WWII Europe
Germany is divided into occupation zones after the war and "nobody is happy"
competing postwar images of East and West-- the Soviets viewed the US as threatening economic domination and atomic war, while Americans feared "Red Fascism"
"If Italy Goes"-- an early example of fears of a "domino theory"
competing "internationalist" and "isolationist" views on the early Cold War
the Communist takeover in Czechoslovakia helped to pass the Marshall Plan, and further fears of Soviet intentions led to the formation of NATO (1949)
post-WWII Asia and the Pacific region
early Cold War setbacks included the "loss of China" and the Soviet A-bomb test (1949)
Korea, 1950-1953
the initial response to the Korean War was as a defense of democracy
retreat across the 38th parallel after the Chinese invasion, 1950
competing views of the situation in Korea-- MacArthur as a "flat-earther", and MacArthur being "hemmed in" by Truman and the State Department
Truman's "firing" of MacArthur was politically unpopular, and led to charges that Truman was out of his depth in foreign policy

September 7:
anti-Japanese sentiment after Pearl Harbor led to the forced internment of Japanese-Americans on the West Coast
pictures and advertisements emphasized the "Rosie the Riveter" aspect of women in the wartime workplace

"Woman-Power" and "The Kid In Upper 4"-- advertisements that attempted to reassure the nation that changing roles during wartime would not have permanent effects
in FDR's saying, "Dr. New Deal" was replaced with "Dr. Win The War" for the duration of the war
Roosevelt retained strong approval figures during the wartime period
FDR won votes by "defending" the "honor" of his dog Fala in 1944

the 1944 election, and the county-by-county results (Roosevelt counties in black, Dewey counties in white)
peacetime reconversion gave rise to economic fears
Truman had a rough first year in the White House
protestors demanding an end to military segregation, 1948

the Taft-Hartley Act (1947) angered labor unions and passed over Truman's veto
in 1948, Dewey promised to "clean house", and magazines referred to him as "the next president" even before election day
Truman's famous revenge
the 1948 election, and the county-by-county results (Truman counties in brown or beige, Dewey counties in blue, Thurmond counties in green)

August 31:
the "Big Three" of World War II-- Stalin, Roosevelt, and Churchill

World War II in Europe
Leaders of World War II-- Eisenhower, Marshall, MacArthur, and Oppenheimer

The D-Day invasion of 1944 led to V-E Day, 1945
World War II in the Pacific
wartime advertising both promoted the war effort and promised postwar prosperity

wartime workers-- constructing aircraft and "Liberty Ships"
posters encouraged public involvement in the war effort and often aimed at raising public morale
the fictional "Willie & Joe" came to represent the average G.I. in the public mind
rationed items during wartime-- tires and meat
ration books and ration coupons
ration books and posters warned against violating the rationing guidelines
an example of a scrap drive, encouraged by FDR and the government

August 24:

A sign too commonly seen in 1940 America
The start of World War II prompted fears that the US would be drawn in
protests against the Lend-Lease proposal, 1941
sentiment (of varying intensity) against Roosevelt's 3rd term bid, 1940
Opposing candidates in 1940: Roosevelt ("better a 3rd termer than a 3rd rater") and Willkie
war and peace dominated the 1940 campaign, with occasional additional trivial issues
the 1940 election, and the county-by-county results (Roosevelt counties in black, Willkie counties in white)
drawing draft numbers, pre-Pearl Harbor
1941 shipments to Britain were endangered by submarine warfare, while some questioned the continued sale of material to Japan
a scale model of Pearl Harbor constructed pre-attack by the Japanese, and the resulting attack