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The 1950's: A Time Without Cohesion

During the 1950’s the comic book industry in America was a bit misguided and lost. There was no longer a fraternal bond between comic book writers, there was now a competition between them to be the best writer out there. Comic book editors were trying to come up with new ways to draw their readers in during a post war era that lacked potential villains for superheroes to fight. Comic books began to become graphic and violent. With many kids being free to roam the neighborhood and do what they please until dinner time these comic books were considered to be a bad influence on children. The gruesome images that were depicted in the comic books came under fire when children were caught doing things that are “not socially acceptable.” During this time however it is not fair to blame comic books for this violence. Teens and young children were misguided due to a lack of parental support. In many middle class American families there was no cohesion. The families worked more as a m…

The 1950s are often portrayed as a period of social cohesion, why is this misleading?

Despite television portrayals of families like the Cleavers or later (in the 70's) the Brady Bunch, society was neither a perfect family system nor did it perpetuate social cohesion. Having won the war to end all wars, WWII, American soldiers returned home with more money and promptly separated themselves from the rest of society in a white flight to the suburbs. Despite this singular movement by white families, the Cold War and the Korean War had as much impact on the 50's construction of social cohesion as was imaginable.
With the start of the Korean War came the similar hysteria associated with all wars: the abstracted and heavily radicalized stereotypes of Korean characters. No where was this more pertinent then in comics where superheroes attempted a comeback in the fight against Korea and communism. Back on the home-front however, the red scare quickly emboldened societal disfunction and rifts between whole sections of the population. The McCarthy trials only propagated t…

The 1950s are often portrayed as a period of social cohesion, why is this misleading?

The 1950s are often portrayed as a period of social cohesion, why is this misleading? This is very misleading because in society there wasn’t very much cohesion socially. The civil rights movement was starting and people we divided socially and racially. Also comic books where divided in concepts of what they can and cannot print. The comic code authority was instituted in 1948. This was a self regulated organization that significantly limited comic book creator’s thoughts, ideas and creations. Because of the CCA the age of very creative, free comics we over, because of crime comics and gruesome horror comics the code was instituted. This code continued through the 1950s. The 1950s was a time of recovery from World War 2 so it would seem that society was coming together after fighting the biggest war of all time. In some lights the 1950s is seen as America getting back to being one unified country again. But back in America many things were beginning to spark up and cohesion was not …

The 1950s are often portrayed as a period of social cohesion, why is this misleading?

When one thinks of cohesion ideas such as unity come to mind. The roll of comics during this time is anything but unified. When comics were first released they had little to no restrictions on what would be put into the story. There were gruesome scenes and other graphic situations. To the readers the creativity of the artist and writers was something that helped create comics as an art form. With little limits, there was heavy competition between comic creators to think of new and exciting ideas for the reader.This all changed in 1948 when the comics code authority was instituted. This self regulated organization drastically limited what could be put into comics. The reason for this was to protect the youth that might be influenced by reading graphic materials. Overnight comics seemed to loose their excitement. The creators were constantly fighting the CCA over what could be put into the strips. This caused a decrease in productivity undermining the cohesion of the art. Comics were h…

The 1950’s are often portrayed as a period of social cohesion, why is this misleading?

This statement can be very misleading because even though this in part of the recovery from World War II, a time where America came together in the war effort, after the war was different. The whole comic book world took a turn for the worst and just crashed after World War II. Comics flourished during the war because it gave Americans a reason to be interested, it was involving something that hit close to home. After the war was over, these comics were no longer popular because Superman or Captain America could not go out and fight those that they had already beat in World War II. America was trying to become a "better" country by making the citizens as high of quality citizens possible. Social revolutions were on the upcoming, women's rights were being brought to the forefront of American priorities. Fathers were finally back to being in contact with their family instead of at war and families were now closer then ever. Those comics that were being read by the children…

The 1950's are often portrayed as a period of social cohesion, why is this misleading?

The 1950’s are misleadingly portrayed as a time of cultural cohesion because of the time of peace the U.S. was going through. Men and Women had their place giving children unsupervised time for play. Men were home from the war so marriages and babies were on the rise, therefore the endorphins associated with those two things probably gave the whole decade a rose tint. The 50’s are painted as the perfect balance between male and female spheres in a suburban utopia, but in reality these spheres where stifling for those put into them and for the children whose futures they would become. In reality the 1950’s were not really the American golden age. Bomb shelters were encouraged and drills in school prepared children for some sort of nuclear attack. While nothing actually happened, society clung to the normalcy of the nuclear family and comfort of the family way. Sticking to the norm soothed the nerves of American. All of the pop-culture that came from the 50’s reeks of wholesome, unless …

The 1950s are often portrayed as a period of social cohesion, why is this misleading?

Looking back on the 1950s American culture, the broad picture of the U.S. seemed to show a more harmonious country than ever before. Classic shows like "Leave it to Beaver" and "I Love Lucy" portrayed the perfect American lifestyle, and the goal was to make the shows reflect real life. From the end of World War II in 1945 to the early 1950s, America was basically in control of the world economy and held a huge advantage with weaponry, as shown with the detonation of a plutonium and nuclear bomb over Japan. The youth's activity was also very clean-cut on the surface, with gender roles becoming stronger and clearer, and anarchy down to a minimum, especially in light of the coming decades. Socially, American culture seemed the most ideal of any decade…at least, on the surface.
Societal hysteria was raised in the 1950s society because of three things: the Cold War, the Korean War, and the war on comic books and other media. The aggression over nuclear weaponry cause…

The 1950's are often portrayed as a time of social cohesion, why is this misleading?

The 1950’s were portrayed as a period of social cohesion because of the prosperity we were going through economically, and how it was the rebirth of the middle class. This middle class began being the centerfold for the American lifestyle and gave off a sense of cohesion. This comfortable living was what people thrived for, and anything that stood in the way of a comfortable, stress free lifestyle was very deeply criticized. This was true with the comic book industry. While the typical father was at work, and the mother at home keeping up the house, the children were free to do as they pleased until dark. A significant amount of these children choose to spend their time reading comic books, which varied in genre. Some comic books were patriotic and showed war heroes, or superhero’s saving the day. But the comics that became the most criticized were the horror and crime comics. The general public saw these books as destructive to children’s minds, and forced them into juvenile delinque…

The 1950’s are often portrayed as a period of social cohesion, why is this misleading?

The 1950’s was a very tense time for the United States. Giving the 1950’s the title “a period of social cohesion” is very misleading. The war had just ended and all the soldiers were returning home to their families and it we were entering into the period of the baby boom. It was looking like the United States was in a prime position to thrive, little did people know there were some major troubles in the near future.
Communism became a big topic of discussion in America which lead to the McCarthy hearings. The outbreak of the Korean War also meant U.S. troops would be sent back out to help with the conflict. The comic book industry also stirred up some controversy with the content the writers were filling the pages with. Many thought the increase of violence among young people during this time was due to the comics they were reading. The common tends in comic topics in the 1950’s had to do with a lot of crime and violence. People became upset with the comic book creators and demanded a…

The 1950’s are often portrayed as a period of social cohesion, why is this misleading?

This is a misleading statement because right after the end of WWII, America was going through important rebuilding times that required unity and growth for the country as a whole. And it was, after all, a time of development and financial prosperity for the U.S. But with great pride and freedom there was also more than a hand full of issues that the country was dealing with as well. The list began with civil rights and women's rights, and it also included comic books, of course. The comic book industry was being bashed by every parent in the country, along with several teachers, doctors, and other adults. After the war, when superhero comics essentially went down the drain in terms of popularity, the industry went down the route of crime, horror, and everyday news stories. To the children in which the comics were targeting, the stories were awesome, of course. But to adults they were corrupting the youth of America one gory tale at a time. With the war just ending, the Amer…

The 1950’s are often portrayed as a period of social cohesion, why is this misleading?

Saying that the 1950's was a period of social cohesion is misleading because although it is perceived that there were very few social issues in the U.S., there were actually quite a few, and a lot of it had to do (or at least people thought) with comic books. This period of time in the United States was important; we were just coming out of World War Two and we were about to enter the era known as the baby boom. Contrary to popular belief that this was a time of great growth and prosperity, it was actually a time of great social debate. As if social rights, civil rights, and women's rights weren't enough to handle, comic books were being blamed for the corruption of our youth.
This was the first time in our history that a consumer product had been targeted at a certain group of people, and obviously the American public was quick to point the finger at the comic industry. Up until this point, the main genre of comics were superheroes fighting crime and comedy. As the industr…

The 1950’s are often portrayed as a period of social cohesion, why is this misleading?

The 1950’s were a very stressful time for The United States. The country was just coming out of World War II and Korea and had to deal with a lot of issues back home as well. Many movements were becoming to take a stand such as woman’s rights and civil rights. The red scare was also a huge deal. The Russians began to become a huge super power and the idea of communism was spreading. The United States was very nervous about communism taking over the world and it put stress on the US. The government went crazy with power and began to sensor a lot of media. Part of this censorship was put on the comic book industry. Many people believed that the comic books that were being made had a bad influence on the youth of our nation. The comic book stories that were being developed were comics based on violence and horror. The idea of murder was amongst the comic book stories in great detail. The youth of America became more violent than ever before. This is what made the government put special c…

The 1950s Are Often Portrayed As A Period of Social Cohesion...

People didn’t set the standards; the standards were set for you. The 1950s were not a time of social cohesion but it was misleading because it was a time of “don’t air your dirty laundry.” Women were to act perfect; the “Stepford wife” if you will, while the men went to work like “Don Draper.” Although the comic codes were in full fruition, people found ways to cause a raucous. Comic books were the reason that children were acting violently. Comic books are a media outlet and they didn’t have to follow the conservative nature that the decade seemed to promote. One of the most popular selling genres of that time was the Romance comics. The romance comics not only attracted male readers, but female readers as well. This, alone, can be alarming for the “social cohesion” of the 50s because men expected their wives to be at home all day cooking, cleaning, caring for the children, etc. They didn’t want their wives spending any additional time reading comic books. Perhaps the comic codes sho…

The 1950s are often portrayed as a period of social cohesion. Why is this misleading?

During the 1950's, it was time of reorganization. At that time America was going trough hard time, coming out of World War Two, the Korean war, Red scare, racism, human rights, social issues, civil rights movements, feminism, and more. There fore America needed to put firm control over media. Sometimes a lot of censorship had to take place to control media, and public to keep the society clam and organized. Most people agreed upon behaving nicely, good valued family, going to church on sundays, and so on. However, it is hard to say all that social movements was done by social cohesion. Part of it might be true, but people were sort of forced to be that way. Because of being at that time, it was right thing to do to fit in those social grouping. People had to act that way because of time being 1950's when everything was so toned down, and a lot of "taboo" was taking place. Government and media set a standard life style for public by media censorship to keep the publi…

The 1950s are often portrayed as a period of social cohesion. Why is this misleading?

When we think of the 1950's, most people think of similar things such as "Leave it to Beaver", very conservative and cliched pop music, and high patriotism. Our view of that time is one of social conformity to conservative values, with a traditional nuclear family where the father worked and the mother stayed home, where a majority of people attended church, where crime was relatively low, where a majority of American citizens were extremely patriotic, and where entertainment media emphasized these same conservative values and were subjected to censorship if they did not conform. This is misleading because while these things were all true to a certain extent, the world was obviously not perfect and not everyone was conforming or upholding traditional values, even if it seemed like they were. The 1950's were actually a very tumultuous time period, with the end of World War II leaving Europe war torn and in debt, the outbreak of the Korean War and the clashes of opinio…

Blaming comics for societal failure…

Comic books as a hobby spanned many age groups but the primary focus of the nation was what children could/were reading. After World War II a return to normalcy included a return of the idea of childhood innocence. Meanwhile the new generation had grown up during a war, with news reels in movie theatres, and their fathers sent overseas. They had already grown up to fast and after the war, pandering to their simplicity through a basic super hero plot line, would not be enough to sell comic books, as publishers soon discovered. Publishers would have been fine continuing to create “childish” material had the market allowed but art goes where its buyers go and so the industry “wrote up” not an in attemptto pander, but in an attempt to follow the trends in a post war market.Crime fiction began to sell because of its mature subject matter. Had superhero’s featured more dastardly villains or maybe even more moral ambiguities, they might have been more popular. Children were being reverted ba…

Why blame comics for societal failure?

With the end of WWII and the baby boomer generation, the construction of the family system changed. With the end of the war came an influx in financial development, which led to a shift in the economic development of the country. The middle class became a much larger group of people because of the heightened economy, which saw many families move to the suburbs to explore the "realities" of life. However, once there, families realized that the father was no longer a dominant force in the child's life, and there was worry about the child's ability to retain the same morals and values that their parents represented during the war. With the father gone, the mother busy with housework or away at work, the children were left to play in suburbia or to entertain themselves somehow. This is where the advent of comics comes into play. With the introduction of comics, children were reading much more, but not about the morally perfect Superman fighting for the good of society. R…