Copyright 1995 ABC-CLIO. This review was taken from the ABC-CLIO Video Rating Guide for Libraries on CD-ROM, a 5-year compilation of over 8900 video titles and reviews, 1990-1994. For information regarding order VRGL CD-ROM, contact: ABC-CLIO, P.O. Box 1911, Santa Barbara, CA 93116-1911; 805-968-1911

This following text has been included in the UCB Media Resources Center Web site with the kind permission of the publishers.

Making Sense of the Sixties

  • Seeds of the Sixties
  • We Can Change the World
  • Breaking Boundaries, Testing Limits
  • In a Dark Time
  • Picking up the Pieces
  • Legacies of the Sixties
  • Rating: *****
  • Audience: High School to Adult
  • Price: Series (public): $295.00
  • Date: Copyright 1991. Released 1991.
  • Descriptors: United States - History - 20th century.
  • Production Information: Live action, Archival footage. Produced by Ricki Green, David Hoffman. Videos: 6. Color, b&w. Includes Teacher's guide. Closed captioned. 60, 60, 60, 60, 60, 60 min.
  • Production Company: WETA, Washington Varied Directions
  • Available from: PBS Video 1320 Braddock Pl. Alexandria, VA 22314-1698 (703)739-5380
  • Cataloging: ||United States - History - 1961-1969
  • Print Entry #: 2:1708
  • Reviewer: Gary D. Barber

    This PBS series on the 1960s provides a thorough overview of the decade on six one-hour video tapes. The use of over a hundred interviews with a wide range of people is an especially effective device in bringing this decade to life for younger viewers. Among those interviewed are former hippies, social activists, musicians, students, commune members, authors, and parents. Through their reminiscences these now middle-aged men and women reveal a great deal of uniformity - not in politics or philosophy, but in their deeply felt emotions about the period.

    Seeds of the Sixties looks to the tranquil 1950s for answers to the social upheavals of the next decade. It is obvious that the civil-rights marches and acts of civil disobedience by blacks helped break down the social perameters of the 1950s. We Can Change the World covers the idealistic revolution among the era's college students. John F. Kennedy's election and Lyndon Johnson's war on poverty and civil rights legislation helped promote the idea that anything was possible, but Kennedy's assassination and the many other negative events of the time disillusioned many of those youths by mid-decade. Breaking Boundaries, Testing Limits looks at the immense changes in America's youth culture between 1964 and 1968. The Beatles; happiness as a goal in itself, the counterculture of Haight-Ashbury, communes, the alternative press, Eastern religions, and mind-altering drugs are all discussed. Freedom without responsibility, however, could not be sustained - and Woodstock marked the death of the counterculture. In a Dark Time looks at Vietnam War protests, racial unrest in America's cities, and Martin Luther King's and Robert Kennedy's assassinations. Picking Up the Pieces examines the growth of single-issue causes such as women's rights, gay liberation, and the environmental and Native American movements, the Vietnam War and the killings at Kent State, and the end of the era. Legacies of the Sixties argues that this pivotal decade will continue to affect later generations. The societal changes begun in the 1960s persist: divorce is more common, couples living together before marriage is a widely accepted phenomenon, curricular reforms continue on college campuses, and earning a lot of money is no longer seen as the only important career goal.

    A printed guide is included with the series to assist in class discussion. With its technical excellence and logical organization, this documentary is highly recommended for viewing by high school, college, and adult groups.

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