Photos That Capture The Essence of The 1960s and ’70s

The 1960s and ’70s were decades of promise, change, and political and social turmoil. These years helped birth a generation of free thinkers and activists who helped paved the way for the way our world is today. From the beatniks reading poetry in underground coffee shops to disco-lovers dancing the night away, take a look at the photos that help illustrate the United States as it was in the 1960s and ’70s.

Allen Ginsburg Leads the Beatnick Movement


Photo Credit: Michael Stroud/Express/Getty Images

This is a picture of one of the leading figures of the Beat Movement, Allen Ginsberg, hanging out with some other beat poets in 1965. The Beat Movement was a youth subculture that attracted those with a creative deposition such as poets, writers, artists, musicians, and everything in between. Although the movement was existent in the 1950s, it wasn’t truly established in the United States in the early 1960s.

When it came to style, the beatniks had their own look. They kept it simple with dark clothes and articles of clothing such as narrow black pants, black t-shirts, and turtlenecks with a lot of Parisian influence. A cigarette was a must and a beret was optional. It was their Bohemian lifestyle and outlook on society that would eventually develop into the hippie movement of the later 1960s.