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After the post-war euphoria, the baby-boom and the expansion of the consumer society, the USA entered a period of social and political trouble. John F. Kennedy was assassinated in 1963, and his brother Bobby and Martin Luther King in 1968. Moreover, this nation, which is the most powerful in the world, was unable to win an unpopular war in Vietnam and faced massive opposition at home from left-wing intellectuals, militant blacks and women’s liberationists.
Against such a background, the Pop Revolution, which affected all art forms, expressed young people’s dissatisfaction with the conventional society. The Pop Revolution broke down social barriers among the young, who began to express their thoughts and feelings without inhibition. This was a major change in the pattern of the American life.
Pop art expressed a move away from Abstract art and mirrored the advanced consumerism of the American society in which new products such as electric guitars, amplifiers, freezers, and instant meals flooded ordinary life. Artists such as Andy Warhol reproduced everyday images of the American pop culture - soup cans, Coca Cola bottles, cigarette packs and comic strips.
In music, Bob Dylan and Joan Baez, two of the most prominent voices of the 60s, introduced political and social protest in their songs and expressed their views against the war in Vietnam and against racial segregation. This musical era culminated in the Woodstock concert in 1969. The Pop Revolution expressed its anti-Establishment attitude in outward appearance as well: clothes became brightly colored and Oriental, and both men and women wore their hair very long.
The United States continues to struggle with the attempt to balance domestic needs and international concerns. There are economic, political, cultural as well as social problems that exist in the U.S. and abroad. For instance, how should U.S. deal with climate change? With terrorism? With poverty and inequality? With humanitarian crises? A consensus about how to deal with this issues is difficult to achieve. All in all, a healthy democracy is requiring both debate and discussion as far as values and policies are concerned. All these endeavors are shaping the place of U.S. in the world. It is worth mentioning that the universal as well as permanent truths of both human equality and liberty are kept in the U.S. by the rule of law while being reflected in its institutions and cherished by all people.