Identity: National, Gender, Race, Class (NAT)

Category: Culture
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This theme focuses on how and why definitions of American and national identity and values have developed, as well as on related topics such as citizenship, constitutionalism, foreign policy, assimilation, and American exceptionalism. (Who is an American and what does it mean to be an American? What rights and responsibilities come with being an American? How have we treated those we have deemed to be non-Americans? Causes and results of nationalism.)Politics and Power (POL) – This theme focuses on how different social and political groups have influenced society and government in the United States, as well as how political beliefs and institutions have changed over time. Congress in order to stop a recession, eased veterans back into the work force and rewarded soldiers with the GI Bill of 1944. This promised unemployment benefits, veterans’ hospitals, low-interest loans and paid for up to four years of education or job training.

Civil Rights

Fight for equality under the law, in every sense for African Americans; freedom from discrimination, equal employment opportunity, education, and housing, unrestricted voting rights and equal access to public facilities. Established executive order 9981 in 1948 (desegregated the military), Civil Rights act of 1964 (banned public segregation and federal bias), Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (enforced ban on job discrimination) and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (Outlawed ways to deny votes). More pride was invoked throughout African American communities nationwide with an obvious view of desegregation and era of equality incoming.

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Student Protests

Students in the 1960’s called for a new left, wanting to control decisions that affected their lives directly instead of the government. Called for an end to materialism, militarism, and racism, were strongly outspoken to war. No large political success, but many small groups such as the Student’s for a Democratic Society and the Berkley Free Speech Movement grew and activated protests on campuses nationwide. This movement mobilized large number of students with over 300,000 joining in the March Against Death as many saw themselves able to influence the political choices that affected them.

Sexual Revolution

Go Anywhere, Do Anything attitude from counterculture increased sex and normalized it’s culture. This with the rising use of contraceptives and birth control called for more legality, and Gays/Lesbians began coming out, wanting more rights and freedoms. Roe v. Wade case in 1973 resulted in state laws that prohibitted abortions were made unconstitutional based on a woman’s right to privacy. Homosexuals won the right to be classified as a normal sexual orientation as opposed to the previous mental disorder title – this increased more public “coming out of the closet”. Lesbians were later allowed into the Women’s Rights movements and the immorality was dropped. Economics: Work, Exchange, and Technology (WXT) – This theme focuses on the factors behind the development of systems of economic exchange, particularly the role of technology, economic markets, and government

GI Bill of rights (1944) gave veterans priority in job opportunities along with large unemployment benefits, specifically education. Younger generations too saw the increased wages and importance of having a higher degree/education. Increase in spending cause $14.5 billion deficit but money was easily made back years later through increased taxes on baby boomers and said veterans. 1944 International Monetary Fund was created in order to stabilize exchange rates and currencies in relation to the USD. This laid out framework and basis to form the World Bank which helped rebuild war-torn areas. Later led to 1947 General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade which broke up previous tariffs and grew international trade. Employment Act of 1946 ensured economic growth and established the Council of Economic Advisers which basically assisted the president in running policies to maintain the economy.

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Identity: National, Gender, Race, Class (NAT). (2021, Jul 10). Retrieved from