The Culture of the 1970s

The american culture of the 1970s was pretty different compared to the culture of the 1960s. The 1970s is sometimes called the “Me” decade because people became more focused on themselves, unlike the 1960s, which was a decade about community. Also the fashion, economy, and the way people thought of life, was much different than ever before.

The Music

Music became more and more popular during the 70s, with new genres like funk, hip hop, and disco, becoming more popular. The biggest of these new emerging genres was Disco music with bands, Bee Gees, ABBA, and KC. But also R&B and Soul music became popular with bands like Stevie Wonder, The Temptations, and Jackson 5. 

Even with these new genres Rock still remained very popular, with new genres within the Rock genre becoming more popular. There were the Rock genres southern rock, folk rock, and soft rock, with groups such as The Carpenters and James Taylor. But there were more intense genres of Rock that were a lot more progressive such as hard rock and heavy metal, with bands like AC/DC and Led Zeppelin. 

Jamaican Reggae music though was already popular in the Caribbean and Jamaica became much more popular in America thanks to the musical artist Bob Marley. But even with all of these new genres country music remained still very popular in America, with music artists like Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers, who made it more mainstream.


During the early 1970s several architects competed against one another to build the tallest building in the world. The World Trade center towers in New York city were the tallest buildings from 1972-1973. The World Trade center towers were surpassed in 1973 when the Chicago Sears Tower was completed in 1973, making it the tallest building in the world. In the 70s architects began to experiment with new geometric designs for buildings, pop art, and postmodernism styles. 


Fashion in the 70s was inspired by the Hippie movement and styles seen in Hollywood films and popular music. Some of the clothing items that were popular around that time were bell bottom pants, turtle neck shirts, and platform shoes. Popular hairstyles around that time for men were sideburns and beards, and popular female hairstyles went from straight and very long to shorter, more feathery and voluminous cuts.


Movies and TV shows remained popular throughout the 70s. Some of the greatest movie franchises during the 70s were Star Trek and Star Wars. Star Wars was so popular that books, comic books, and later video games were made.


The 70s or the “Me” mindset replaced the mindset of community from the 60s. This mindset change brought on a new surge of fashion trends, music, and entertainment. People during the 70s were less optimistic than people during the 50s, but with the Vietnam war ending people began to become more optimistic and hopeful.

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