Do not argue that the period was both beneficial and detrimental (which, of course,it was). Make sure you argue the side assigned to you. Be sure to argue HOW the period was either beneficial or detrimental. What one major issue or theme made the period either beneficial ordetrimental, and for whom was it beneficial or detrimental, as wellas how was it beneficial or detrimental to the nation as a whole.
In order to make your argument, you MUST use one primary source (the documents) each fromChapters 24-26 in Voices of Freedom and two examples from the lectures (at least five examples in total). You will be graded on the quality of your examples and explanations, not the quantity of your examples. Be sure to fully explain how your examples support the position you are arguing.
Papers should be about 4-5 pages long (typed and doubled-spaced), but length is less important than content. For citations from the book, cite the document and page number. You do not need to cite information from the lectures, but should you bring in outside sources

Guide to Writing the Papers
These guidelines are applicable to all the assignments in this course.
1) Be sure to clearly state your argument in the first paragraph. Your argument should be more than just a statement that things during the period under consideration were beneficial or detrimental, it should say how they were beneficial or detrimental.
2) Select the best sources to support your argument. Use examples from the lectures and documents to support your argument. You do not need to cite material from the lectures, but examples from the textbook should be cited after the material and/or quote appears in your paper by providing the name of the document and page number parenthetically.
3) Be sure your examples cover the whole period under question, for example you do not want all of your examples for the first assignment to all be from Reconstruction.
4) Be sure all your examples support the same general idea. For example, if your argument is that events of a certain time period were beneficial because of general prosperity which benefitted most Americans, then make sure that all your examples support the idea that most Americans were benefitting economically.
5) You should spend more time explaining your examples than you do describing them. Describing just says what happened, while explaining says how it is beneficial or detrimental.
6) Ask questions. If you have questions about your argument, or specific examples, please ask them either in class, in office hours or by email. The Teaching Assistants and I are available to assist you.
7) Papers should be typed and doubled-spaced. While there is no length requirement or limit, 4 to 5 pages is average. Explaining your argument with the required number of examples is what matters most. More examples will not increase your grade.
The Domestic Cold War
The Anti-Communist Consensus

Everyone in America agrees that Communism is not a good thing.
Divide is apparent in how to combat Communism.
House Un-American Committee (HUAC)

Investigates cases of radicalism, espionage, etc.
Goal is to weed out people in the country that are Un-American.
Focus was Communists and Socialists.

Truman and Liberal Anti-Communism

Liberals – best way to fight Communism was through foreign policy.

Problem is this is very expensive. Must maintain many armed forces.

Truman Doctrine (1947)
Alger Hiss

Accused of giving secrets to the Soviet Union in the 1930s when he worked in the state department.
Truman backs Hiss. Hiss is found guilty of giving out information (perjury).

Republicans said his foreign policy isn’t working, the real problem is people in the government giving information out to the Soviet.

Julius and Ethel Rosenburg

Arrested, convicted, executed.
Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were American citizens who were accused and convicted of spying on behalf of the Soviet Union.
Republicans used this as fuel to go against Truman and the Liberal policy of batting communism.

McCarthy and Conservative Anti-Communism

Senator Joseph McCarthy

In 1950, he proclaimed that he had evidence that there were several Communists working in the State Government. In retrospect, he had no evidence.
People were so afraid of Communists that they believed him.

Lavender Scare

The “Lavender Scare” refers to a witch hunt and the mass firings of homosexual people in the 1950s from the United States government. It contributed to and paralleled the anti-communist campaign known as McCarthyism and the Second Red Scare.
Government tried to weed out suspected homosexuals.
400-500 Government employees were fired as a result.

McCarran Internal Security Act (1950)

An Act to protect the United States against certain un-American and subversive activities by requiring registration of Communist organizations, and for other purposes. Nicknames. Internal Security Act of 1950. Enacted by. the 81st United States Congress.

It is illegal to think Communist thoughts.
Truman vetoed this. However, it ends up passing anyway.

Cold War Culture


Dramatic increase in people claiming to be religious, more people attend and donate to churches. 96% of all Americans considered themselves religious.

Seek to equate religious belief with Americanism. Eisenhower claimed that recognition of a supreme being is the first step in being a good American.
Belief was that Communism was anti-god. If you give people a religion, it will help them not become Communist.
In 1954, the phrase “under God” is added to the Pledge of Allegiance.
In 1956, the phrase “In God We Trust” is acclaimed the country motto and placed on all currency.
Once the Soviet Union develops nuclear weapons, anxiety increases. All it takes is the push of one button to start this war. People become more religious because of this.

Many Americans see all three (Protestant, Christianity, Judaism) as the same thing. People are much more tolerant towards one another.
Norman Vincent Peale, The Power of Positive Thinking (1952)

Talks about how Christianity is the science of successful living.
Being religious will make you successful.
Says Jesus Christ is the best business partner you can have.

Revised standard of the Bible is released in 1952. The Bible outsells all other books combined.

The Ten Commandments (1956)

Religious themed movies become big box-office draws.


In 1950s, main debate among educators was Progressive Education.

Based on the idea that education is not only based on memorization, but rather that a good education teaches children how to think. Teaches them arguments have two sides and that they can choose a side of the argument.


Believed education should not be about teaching children how to think, but to create good Americans.
Wanted schools to teach only good things about America, so they were not critical of America. Avoided things such as slavery in America.
Education was meant to serve the nation, not only the individual.

This meant that teachers that were seen too critical of America were targeted by Pro-America. They would notify the parents of the children. Hundreds of teachers get fired across the country for not being suitable for Pro-America.
A lot of the teachers targeted by Pro-America were Jewish teachers. They weren’t teaching a Pro-Christianity agenda.

Sputnik (1957)

First satellite sent to space, Soviet Union.
US had attempted but, up to this point, had failed.

Soviet Union beat America into space.
Sputnik 2 is released a month after Sputnik with a dog inside. The dog survived. This proved man can live in Outer Space.
Focuses a lot of attention on the failure of American education. The idea is American educators are failing because the Soviet Union accomplished this feat before America.
Leads to a focus on education in a service for the country.
Education is the first line of defense in the Cold War.

Comparison between the average US teen (Steven) and the average Soviet teen (Alexi). US was raising a generation of soft kids. Emphasis was put on sports to train young men before they were old enough to join the military. Emphasis was put on math and science classes as well.

The Culture of Conformity

Economic Growth

Postwar period is a very prosperous period because people were making a lot of money during the war and didn’t have much to spend that money on, as a result people save a lot of their money, also because of the extension of credit. Credit becomes a major way people start paying for goods.

Companies exclusive job is to extend people credit (credit card companies). Allows people to spend more money than they are making.
Wages are going up during this period, consumer spending is going way up during this period.
American companies had an upper hand in the world, there was little to no competition.
US made up 6% of world population, the US produced 50% of the world’s goods. American companies are profiting off the rest of the world.
The number of poverty level families was cut in half in the 1950s.

The disparity between the wealthiest and poorest shrinks.
Workers are making more money and working fewer hours.
Entertainment options skyrocket during this period: television, travel.

Population Growth

The Baby Boom

During the war when people are making money, they can now afford to have kids and marry younger.
When people marry younger, they tend to have more children.
In the 1950s, the birthrate increases to over 3 kids per family.
More people are moving into bigger homes with bigger families.

Changes in Social Structure

Economic Concentration

Corporations are making huge profits, but top 5% of corporations are making 87% of all corporate profits.
This means vast majority of corporate wealth is concentrated in a small number of companies.
“Big Three” oil companies, auto manufacturers, etc. Smaller competitors either die out or get bought.

White Collar Majority

For the first time, there is a majority of Americans working white collar jobs opposed to blue collar jobs.
Blue collar work becomes less necessary as increased mechanism begins replacing the need for workers.
An expanding economy makes more places available for people to work white collar jobs.

The Ideology of Abundance and Adjustment

Overall Americans believed that American society was so fruitful that there was an overabundance. The assumption was the economy would get more efficient, and at some point, everyone would have everything they needed and want.

The Classless Society

You don’t have class division the way you have in other societies.
Embourgeoisement Thesis

Everyone can be a part of the middle class.
Being middle class in America is not determined by what you do, you can do it if you can afford the trappings of middle class (house in a neighborhood, car).

Consumption as opposed to production.

The Organizational Family

Family is a corporation in miniature.
Society is organized in such a way that understanding your role will help you become content.
Corporate structure takes place in the household. Husband is CEO, wife is the manager, the kids are the labor.

Idea is that everybody has their role in society.


Mass produced housing. Housing that is meant to be inexpensive.
More people are moving to suburbs. By 1960, most people are living into suburbs as opposed to urban and rural dwellers.
In 1950, 1.4 million houses were built. 3,000 acres a day were bulldozed to make room for houses.

William J. Levitt, “Levittown’s”

Built outside of NYC and Philly. Levittown’s are subdivisions where the price of house was down, there would be three styles of homes that you could choose from.
He could reduce cost by keeping the style of the homes the same.

Federal Housing Authority

Provide low-interest loans.

People can purchase homes with very little down payment.
In 1950s, the average mortgage on a home was 30 years.

Trouble in Paradise

Michael Harrington, The Other America (1962)

Talking about the portion of America that is poor and hidden from American view. All of those who lived in rural areas have failed to keep up.

Rural livers don’t have electricity, heat, running water, etc.
A lot of people don’t have much savings. When a disaster occurs, people descend very quickly from the middle class into poverty.
Argues that American society will become so efficient that everyone will profit, he says that idea is not supported by evidence. There is a class of people, he estimates 25%, that is living in poverty or is one event away from being pushed into poverty. He says the structure of the economy will always make a lower class. We will never ger to the point where everyone is successful.
Attacking the economic system.

David Riesman, The Lonely Crowd (1950)

Argues that the economy is changing the characteristics of Americans. He says in the 19th century they made decisions based off their moral compass, in the 1950s the desire to fit in means people are becoming more likely to make decisions on what others think. Less inner-dependent and more other-dependent.
Says this is not good for democracy. If people stop making decisions on morality and more on appearances, this is dangerous. People can be influenced and manipulated in dangerous ways.

Civil Rights, Part 1

Country was ignoring the fact that people were not given the same opportunities in society.
Groups least affected by the prosperity during this period were the ones that began protesting.

Legalism in the Postwar Period

Smith v. Allwright (1944)

Bans exclusive primaries (white primaries).
Southern states restricted primary voting for African Americans.
Primary voting is important in the South, because a vast majority in the South was essentially one party (Democrats).

By banning African Americans from primary voting, whites can determine who they want to run.
Court rules limiting the voting is unconstitutional.

Thurgood Marshall

Predicted that before 1960 that all segregated schools in the US would be gone.
He was very wrong.

George McLaurin

NAACP challenges the idea of “separate but equal”.
African American who lived in Oklahoma and applied to law school in Oklahoma.
Oklahoma did not have a public black law school.
They cannot deny him education, so they admitted him in law school but segregated him in all his work, he had a separate table to do his work and eat at. He had the same education.

Marshall argues because he was singled out, his education is not equal.
Supreme Court agrees with Thurgood Marshall and rules in favor of George McLaurin.
Segregating black students creates inferior education.

Brown v. Board of Education (1954)

Whole idea of separate but equal in education is unconstitutional.

Eisenhower did not think the federal government should be limited in telling states how to run their schools.
Movement to resist integration decreases the number of schools integrating after the ruling because white Southerners are resisting it.
A lot of states banned black organizations and said they were Communist organizations.

Chief Justice Earl Warren

Earlier been the Attorney General of California during WWII. One of the major politicians to support the internment of Japanese AMericans. After the war, he regretted that.

When he gets to Chief Justice, he first hears Brown v. Board of Education.

Response to Brown
White Southern Resistance

“Southern Manifesto” (1956)

101 of the Congressman from the South out of 128 all sign on to the Southern Manifesto.

A statement saying these politicians will not in any way support or enforce the Brown decision.
This was so accepted and so little acted upon by the federal government, this allows the resistance to grown and become very strong.

Central High School, Little Rock, Arkansas

High school where the National Guard was sent to keep black students out of the school.
Eisenhower sends the National Guard back to the school to help protect the black students.

Governor Orville Faubus

Decides he will use the issue of integration and segregation to support his re-election.
Says he will send the National Guard to Central High School in order to keep black students from attending. He says it will ensue peace.
This ends up creating an opposition to integrating Central High School.
Faubus pulls the National Guard before the black students arrive. They have no protection from the mobs that were there against the blacks.

Montgomery Bus Boycott

Rosa Parks gets in the bus, sits in the first row of the black section. The white section filled up, any new white passengers could force the blacks to move back in the bus or stand.
Rosa Parks was asked to move back, she refuses. The bus driver calls the police. She gets arrested for not giving up her seat. This leads to an outcry from the black community.
Black passengers are a significant share of the bus riders in Montgomery. The bus company needed their service. If they boycotted, it would make a serious economic impact for the bus company.
Bus Boycott is put into effect. They wanted the bus company to not force blacks to give up their seats and asked for black bus drivers on routes that were predominantly in the black community. Bus company refuses. Boycott lasts 381 days. The demands of the boycotters become greater and greater as time goes on.

Eventually the bus company must give in. 90% of the black community participated in the boycott.
This proves a point to the nation: shows how people are willing to give up a convenience in order to make a point.
Brings to the forefront Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the SCLC.
Problem of the boycott was that boycotting only works with businesses that depend on your patronage. Not effective with the complete idea of segregation and identification.
Once blacks oppose segregation more aggressively, then the violence picks up.

Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC)

Major Civil Rights group.

Civil Rights, Part 2
Direct Non-Violent Action

Sit Ins

Act in which a group of young freshmen from NCA&T who went to a drugstore. They went and sat down at the lunch counter and asked to be served. Rather than leaving when told no, they ended up sitting there for the rest of the day. They occupied the spaces so no other customers could sit there. They kept the business from doing their work. The next day, they return with 23 of their classmates. Now, they are taking up space in the store. On the third day, over 60 people showed up. By the end of the week, a 1,000 joined the protest.
They had to be very respectful and act as law abiding citizens so they would not be arrested. Non-violent protests.
Within several weeks of the first sit in, towns across the upper south saw a variety of sit ins occurring.

This was not an act that was founded by a large civil rights group.
Focusing the attention on the young people involved in the sit ins was key.
Sit Ins tended to have a positive effect, most successful in the upper part of the south, not as successful in the deep south. Resistance to these protests become greater in the deep south.
Ella Baker, James Lawson

Organized Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee.

James Lawson – promoted the idea that non-violent protest must be the basis of the next phase of the Civil Rights movement. Turn the other cheek philosophy.

Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC)

Main job was to go to protests and train people how to not react.
The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee was one of the major American Civil Rights Movement organizations of the 1960s. It emerged from the first wave of student sit-ins and formed at a May 1960 meeting organized by Ella Baker at Shaw University.

Freedom Rides and “Bull” Connor

Begin as a test to see if the interstate bus system has been integrated.
A group takes a bus from Washington D.C. to New Orleans for a Civil Rights event. In South Carolina, a group of whites are waiting for the bus and a mob attacks the blacks.
In Alabama, a mob throws a bomb in the bus forcing everyone to evacuate and then outside the bus people were waiting with baseball bats.
SNCC meets the bus in Birmingham, Alabama. Bull Connor takes them back to Tennessee.
In Jackson Mississippi, the riders were immediately thrown in jail. They decide to stay in jail. This encourages other young people to come to Jackson, they get thrown in jail as well. Over 300 members of SNCC were arrested in Jackson.

Bull Connor

Police Chief in Birmingham Alabama.
He strongly opposed activities of the American Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s.

Civil Rights Legislation

Attorney General Robert Kennedy

Big advocate for the protestors.
During Freedom Rides he tries getting local law agencies to keep the riders safe. But he also gets the freedom riders to not go through with the freedom rides. The administration is lukewarm on the Civil Rights movement.
He was concerned about the infringement of voting rights for blacks.

Governor George Wallace

Physically stands in the entrance of a building at the University of Alabama who was trying to keep blacks out of the university.

This starts to change publics opinion about the Civil Rights movement.
Every time the Civil Rights Movement made a gain, there was always a

Medgar Evers

Medgar Wiley Evers was an American civil rights activist in Mississippi, the state’s field secretary for the NAACP, and a World War II veteran who had served in the United States Army.
Shot dead the day that President JFK gave his approval of the Civil Rights Movement.

Civil Rights Act of 1964

Signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson.
Outlaws discrimination in hotels, restaurants, and any other public accommodation.
If you own a business open to the public, you cannot deny service to anyone based on race, religion, national origin, or sex.
Gives the Attorney General the right to sue states for not integrating their schools.

Gave the government more control for rooting out discrimination.
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)

Job was to investigate and prosecute employment discrimination.
Requires that literary tests for voting must be in writing (on record).
Anyone who has finished the 6th grade is considered literate and doesn’t have to take the test.

Voting Rights Act of 1965

When a Southern state wanted to change their election rules, it had to be approved by a higher power.
Voting Rights Act (1965) … It outlawed the discriminatory voting practices adopted in many southern states after the Civil War, including literacy tests as a prerequisite to voting. This “act to enforce the fifteenth amendment to the Constitution” was signed into law 95 years after the amendment was ratified.
Southern Civil Rights movement is achieving their main goals.
By the 1960s, most of the black community migrated out of the South and into the North.

This act did not do much for those who were outside of the South. Most blacks now faced discrimination in housing and lack of economic opportunities.
Civil Rights movement did a lot for Southern blacks but little for Urban blacks.

From Civil Rights to Black Power

Empowerment of black communities.
Protests tended to be violent.

Watts and the “Long Hot Summer”

LA neighborhood. A race riot broke out as a result of the constant intimidation and brutality of the LAPD against black citizens especially in the community of Watts.
A young African American who wasn’t doing anything wrong was arrested. People tried to stop this arrest and it turned into a riot.
When the riot was over, 34 people were dead, 4,000 rioters were in jail, and there was a lot of property damage.
40 cities in the summer of 1966 had race riots.

Long Hot Summer – three separate years linked together by these riots.
This phase ends up losing the sympathy that the Southern Civil Rights Movement gained.

Stokley Carmichael and Black Panthers

The president of the SNCC.
He decides that the best way to achieve the goals of the black power movement is by having SNCC become an organization only for and of African Americans. He kicks out whites that are apart of SNCC.

Leads to the black power movement. On one level it means supporting black owned businesses, projects, supporting a political party that is dedicated specifically for the black community – Black Panther party.
The only way that African Americans can get their wants is through violent needs.
The larger white public says that this has gone too far.
The Black Panthers become public enemy number one.
This doesn’t keep the black power movement down; it makes it more powerful.

Malcolm X

Grew up in the ghettos of Detroit. Was thrown in prison. There, he becomes a follower of Elijah Muhammad. He becomes a follower of Islam.
Argues that African Americans need to turn away from Christianity. Says Christianity has helped to keep blacks from exerting their power.
Works to create a black power movement around that. He is much more willing to use violence to help the black community.
Says having a level of fear attached to you helps your movement.

Civil Rights Legacy

Ends up getting mired in the fact that there is disagreement.
Doesn’t end as much as it continues.

Vietnam, Part 1

A French colony before WWII.

When France gets occupied by Germany, Japan takes over control of France’s colonies in Asia.

Truman and Containment

French don’t want to give up control of Vietnam at the end of WWII.
The French don’t support Ho Chi Minh and the Vietminh.
France controls a small portion of the southern part of Vietnam after WWII.

This leads to France bombing the Northern Vietnamese city of Haiphong.
This starts the First Indochina War. France vs. Vietnam. When this war gets declared, the US and its agenda supports France as opposed to Vietnam.
US is worried if France loses the war, it could damage the French government. If the French government loses the favor of its people, it could cause Communism in France.
The US supports the French by sending military advisors and cash to the French.
Ho Chi Minh

Leader of the Vietminh.
US stands with Ho Chi Minh as he declares them an independent nation.


Nationalist Party. Want to gain control of their country.

Eisenhower and the Domino Theory

When the US rejects Ho Chi Minh, he turns to China. When China becomes Communist, the Vietminh become Communist as well.
Domino Theory – if one country falls to Communism, then it will spread to other surrounding countries. Must stop Communism before it turns into a snowball effect. Communism will keep going until all countries become Communist. This informs American foreign policy Asia throughout the Cold War.
Dien Bien Phu

12,000 French troops were isolated here. They were cut off from the rest of the French army and their supplies.
France asked the US for assistance. They wanted US troops to come in and save them.

Congress does not support a military agenda in Vietnam, neither does the United Nations. As a result, the US doesn’t end up saving the troops. The French troops are forced to surrender. Vietnam wins the First Indochina War.
In the peace talks, they end up dividing Vietnam into two. In 1954, the Demarcation Line is put into effect. For two years, each side will stabilize their economy and the country will vote for who their leadership is.
It was clear that the vast majority were going to support Ho Chi Minh and Communism. The US did not like this.

South East Asian Treaty Organization (SEATO)

A similar organization to NATO.

Made up a lot of small countries that do not have much power.
Never has the same kind of authority or power that NATO had.
The US sent massive amounts of economic aid to South Vietnam.

Ngo Dingh Diem

South Vietnam leader who was chosen by the US because he was very westernized.

He was Catholic, educated i