Face Of A Generation: Baby Boomers
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Politics and Activism

Face Of A Generation: Baby Boomers

Part 1 of 5 Chronicling the Evolution of the American Male

Face Of A Generation: Baby Boomers
Baby Boomsters

The American male has taken on many different faces over the past half century.The characteristics of men in the US is constantly evolving. Whether it be a grizzly John Wayne or an eccentric Prince, men have come out of the Stone Age and formed their own niche in American culture.

This will be part 1 of a 5 part series detailing the evolution that taken place. Today's article will focus on the Baby Boomer generation. The Baby Boomers can be classified as people born between 1946-1964. Post-WWII, families in the US decided to expand drastically. The more children, the better. The men that came out of the Baby Boomers became some of the biggest faces of American culture in the 70's and early 80's. They also went on to form their own counter-culture; the hippie.

The 3 main characteristics we will be looking at are fashion, behavior, and social role. Though these aren't the only things that have changed, they are some of the most important. Sit back and take a look at characteristics of the Baby Boomer male.


The Baby Boomers take on clothing was awe-inspiring and also dumbfounding to a conservative America in the late 1960's. Men such as Jim Morrison, Jimi Hendrix and Andy Warhol brought the counterculture to the forefront. One of, if not the No.1 way they did this was fashion.

Long hair, lifted shoes, bell-bottoms and tie-dye all became stylistic necessities.

The reason behind this was freedom of expression. What expressed rebellion more than cross-faded poncho teamed with a beaded headband?


Lets face it, Steven Tyler doesn't quite have the personality of your grandfather. Manners, respect, conservatism and chivalry were all thrown out the door once the hippies became prominent. This was especially true in entertainment. Stories of excessive drug use, less-than-legal relationships with groupies and destruction of property have all been confirmed by the survivors of this time period.

Now, lets not glance over what I just mentioned. Drugs. Drugs, drugs, and more drugs. This was one of the key symbols of the American hippie. Marijuana, LSD, cocaine and heroin all became habitual parts of many lives.

This did lead to many Americans destroying their personal well-being and ultimately ending their lives but it is a key cog of the time period and cannot be overlooked.

Social Role

The male social role changed in the sense that freedom of expression was condoned instead of condemned. Men for the first time were able live without the responsibility of providing for a family or working the same dead-end job. They could now get high, attend peace rallies and go on drug-fueled adventures wherever they may please.

Everything that took place during the hippie movement would go on to shape American culture for future generations. The Baby Boomer male was really the first of its kind. By completely abandoning former ideals, men were able to shed their skin and become wild and free souls.

Stay tuned for part 2 which will chronicle the 1980's American male and why they used so much hairspray.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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