ERIC Number: ED403839
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Jan-14
Reference Count: N/A
The Big Chill: Changes in American Politics and Society from the Late 1960s to the Present.
Webster, David S.
This essay looks at three kinds of changes in American society over the period from the late 1960s to the mid-1990s. First, data from the Cooperative Institutional Research Program (CIRP) are used to measure trends in college freshmen's political identification, materialism, concern for law and order, and concern for helping others. In all these measures the paper finds that college freshmen have become more conservative. The paper also examines the fate of various reforms and changes, such as making the liberal arts curriculum more "relevant," making academic rules and regulations more flexible, and allowing students a bigger voice in campus affairs. Again, the paper concludes that these reforms were generally failures. Moving off campus, the paper examines other social and political trends over the same period, noting particularly abortion, recreational drugs, and capital punishment. Here again the trend toward conservatism is clear. Finally, the paper finds the most vivid evidence of conservatism in the mellowing of the prominent rebels and protestors of the late 1960s. It concludes that the times have indeed changed, but not quite in the direction that Bob Dylan predicted! (Contains 30 references.) (CH)
Descriptors: Attitude Change, Behavior Change, Change, College Freshmen, Conservatism, Educational Change, Group Behavior, Higher Education, History, Liberalism, Political Attitudes, Political Socialization, Quality of Life, Social Attitudes, Social Change, Social Control, Social Indicators, Social Problems, Social Values, Student Attitudes
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A