History 410
Spring 2010

Student Movements and New Left Politics in the 60s


Anderson, “1968”

What general explanations does Anderson offer to explain the timing of the world-wide uprisings in 1968?

What impact did the Tet Offensive have?

What was impact of King assassination?

Why did Mexico Olympics shake up the nation in 1968?

How did the Columbia University student protests differ?

What key differences between American and Western European movements does the author note?
What was impact and meaning of the Miss America Pageant protest?

Why was Democratic Convention of 1968 so controversial?

What made the 1968 presidential election different and significant?


Isserman and Kazin, “The Contradictory Legacy of the Sixties”

What is the New Left?
What factors do the authors cite that help explain the rise of the New Left?

What contributed to growing influence of SDS? Why did it lose its presence in second half of the decade?

What happened to many of the SDS activists by end of the decade?

What were some of the important legacies of the New Left in the 70s-90s?


Young Americans for Freedom Draft a Conservative Manifesto, 1960”

Who must take the lead in dealing with problems facing the nation?

What values does this group emphasize?

What are the threats to the nation?


Students for a Democratic Society: “Port Huron Statement”

Why is this a helpful document to use in the classroom?

How does this document compared to that expressed by the Young Americans for Freedom?

Who are these people of Students for a Democratic Society?  How do they see themselves?

How do they feel?  What issues or events trouble them?

What do they wish to do or promote?

Overall, what is the tone of their document?