Chapter 37: The Eisenhower Era 1952-1960

Betty Friedan
1921-2006. American feminist, activist and writer. Best known for starting the “Second Wave” of feminism through the writing of her book “The Feminine Mystique”.

Billy Graham
One of the most popular evangelical ministers of the era. Star of the first televised “crusades” for religious revival. He believed that all doubts about the literal interpretation of the bible were traps set by Satan. He supported Republicans and a large increase to money in the military.

Elvis Presley
white singer born in 1935 in Tupelo, Mississippi; chief revolutionary of popular music in the 1950s, fused black rhythm and blues with white bluegrass and country styles; created a new musical idiom known forever after as rock and roll

Marilyn Monroe
A twentieth-century actress who became the leading sex symbol of the 1950s. While still in her thirties, she died of an overdose of sleeping pills. Among her best-known films are The Seven-Year Itch, Bus Stop, and Some Like it Hot.

John Kenneth Galbraith
Canadian economist who wrote The Affluent Society in which he claimed that the nations postwar prosperity was a new phenomenon and The New Industrial State (with their emphasis on public service and the limitations of the marketplace)

Dwight Eisenhower
He was the U. S. general who led the attack in North Africa in Nov. of 1942.He was the master organizer of the D-Day invasion in Europe (June 6, 1944). He ran for the Republican ticket in the 1952 and the1956 elections and won. He was very well liked by the public.

Adlai Stevenson
The Democratic candidate who ran against Eisenhower in 1952. His intellectual speeches earned him and his supporters the term “eggheads”. Lost to Eisenhower.

Joseph McCarthy
1950s; Wisconsin senator claimed to have list of communists in American gov’t, but no credible evidence; took advantage of fears of communism post WWII to become incredibly influential; “McCarthyism” was the fearful accusation of any dissenters of being communists

Martin Luther King, Jr.
U.S. Baptist minister and civil rights leader. A noted orator, he opposed discrimination against blacks by organizing nonviolent resistance and peaceful mass demonstrations. He was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee. Nobel Peace Prize (1964)

Jackie Robinson
The first African American player in the major league of baseball. His actions helped to bring about other opportunities for African Americans.

Rosa Parks
United States civil rights leader who refused to give up her seat on a bus to a white man in Montgomery (Alabama) and so triggered the national civil rights movement (born in 1913)

Earl Warren
controversial Chief Justice of the Supreme Court (1953-1969); he led the Court in far-reaching racial, social, and political rulings, including school desegregation and protecting rights of persons accused of crimes.

Oral Faubus
1957 stand against the desegregation of Little Rock public schools during the Little Rock Crisis, in which he defied a unanimous decision of the United States Supreme Court by ordering the Arkansas National Guard to stop African American students from attending Little Rock Central High School. Despite his initial staunch segregationist stances, Faubus moderated his positions later in life.

Richard Nixon
He was a committee member of the House of Representatives, Committee on Un-American Activities (to investigate “subversion”). He tried to catch Alger Hiss who was accused of being a Communist agent in the 1930’s. This brought Nixon to the attention of the American public. In 1956 he was Eisenhower’s Vice-President.

John Foster Dulles
Eisenhower’s secretary of state, 1953-1959; moralistic in his belief that Communism was evil and must be confronted with “brinkmanship” (the readiness and willingness to go to war) and “massive retaliation” (the threat of using nuclear weapons).

Ho Chi Minh
1950s and 60s; communist leader of North Vietnam; used geurilla warfare to fight anti-comunist, American-funded attacks under the Truman Doctrine; brilliant strategy drew out war and made it unwinnable

Ngo Dinh Diem
American ally in South Vietnam from 1954 to 1963; his repressive regime caused the Communist Viet Cong to thrive in the South and required increasing American military aid to stop a Communist takeover. he was killed in a coup in 1963.

Nikita Khrushchev
Stalin’s successor, wanted peaceful coexistence with the U.S. Eisenhower agreed to a summit conference with Khrushchev, France and Great Britain in Geneva, Switzerland in July, 1955 to discuss how peaceful coexistence could be achieved.

Mohammed Reza Pahlevi
The Shah that was placed in Iran by the CIA in 1953 and he planned to westernize and secularize Iran. Leader backed by the United States because he was against communism, we feared a communist leader would influence the Soviets and cause more problems

Gamal Abdel Nasser
Arab leader, set out to modernize Egypt and end western domination, nationalized the Suez canal, led two wars against the Zionist state, remained a symbol of independence and pride, returned to socialism, nationalized banks and businesses, limited economic policies

Fidel Castro
led the revolution of Cuba and took control of Cuba in 1959; resented past dictators; made Cuba communist

John F. Kennedy
president during part of the cold war and especially during the superpower rivalry and the cuban missile crisis. he was the president who went on tv and told the public about hte crisis and allowed the leader of the soviet uinon to withdraw their missiles. other events, which were during his terms was the building of the berlin wall, the space race, and early events of the Vietnamese war.

Norman Mailer, John Updike, James Baldwin, and Ralph Ellison
Played a major part in the culture in the 1950s, all authors

Paul Robeson
African American concert singer whose passport was revoked and was blacklisted from the stage, screen, radio and television under the McCarran Act of the red scare of the 1950s due to his public criticism of American racist tendencies.

“Cult of Domesticity”
the ideal woman was seen as a tender, self-sacrificing caregiver who provided a nest for her children and a peaceful refuge for her husband, social customs that restricted women to caring for the house

White Collar
those in the professional, technical, clerical, sales, and managerial categories

Blue Collar
jobs in the manuel labor field, particularly those requiring protective clothing

McCarthyism
The term associated with Senator Joseph McCarthy who led the search for communists in America during the early 1950s through his leadership in the House Un-American Activities Committee.

sit-ins
protests by black college students, 1960-1961, who took seats at “whites only” lunch counters and refused to leave until served; in 1960 over 50,000 participated in sit-ins across the South. Their success prompted the formation of the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee.

“Massive Retaliation”
The Eisenhower administration’s policy doctrine for containing Soviet communism by pledging to respond to any act of aggression with the most destructive capabilities available, including nuclear weapons

“spirit of Camp David”
This took place in 1959 and was the second of the treaties between the US and USSR. The leaders spoke of peaceful coexistence and if possible, mutual disarmament, but this diplomacy ended with the U-2 incident.

“Rocket Fever”
The US was desperate to get into space because the soviet union had done so before the US. Billions of dollars were put into the new NASA program in hopes to catch up and excede Russina technology

The Feminine Mystique
written by Betty Friedan, journalist and mother of three children; described the problems of middle-class American women and the fact that women were being denied equality with men; said that women were kept from reaching their full human capacities

Playboy Magazine
A historical determinant of the 1940s – 50s. Valued sex for pleasure, the urbane lifestyle, threat to family ideal, women as objects and masculinity as defined by a choice.

The Affluent Society
(1958) by John Kenneth Galbraith; said that the nation’s postwar prosperity was a new phenomenon…before, there used to be an “economy of scarcity” because of lack of resources and overpopulation, but due to the US’s and other industrialized countries’ technology, it was an “economy of abundance” (new business techniques and improved tech. enabled nations to produce an abundance of goods and services)

Televangelists
Billy Graham, Oral Roberts, Fulton J. Sheen were known as this; they took to the airwaves to spread the Christian gospel

Checkers Speech
A speech made by vice presidential candidate Richard Nixon in 1952 after he had been accused of improprieties regarding a fund established for him to reimburse him for his political expenses. In it, he said that he defended himself and said regardless of what everyone else thought, he would keep a dog that his kids had named checkers. It led to an outpouring of support for Nixon and it secured his place on the republican ticket for the 1952 election.

Army-McCarthy hearings
1954 televised hearings on charges that Senator Joseph McCarthy was unfairly tarnishing the United States Army with charges of communist infiltration into the armed forces; hearings were the beginning of the end for McCarthy, whose bullying tactics were repeatedly demonstrated

Sweatt v. Painter
this case involved a black man who was refused admission to the University Of Texas Austin School Of Law. At the time there was no law school open only to blacks in Texas, according to the Plessy v. Ferguson “separate but equal” requirement. The case continued for six months, while a new school of law for blacks was created in Texas. However, the resulting school was in no way equal to the UT Austin Law School due to the lack of faculty and resources in the library. This case is significant because it does not overturn separate but equal factor and the Supreme Court rules that in the case of graduate education intangibles must be considered as being equal. This decision reflects how severe racial discrimination was, especially within our own school system we attend today and how there is a wide range of races who attend UT Austin today.

An American Dilemma
Gunnar Mydral published his landmark book, this exposed the scandalous contradictions between the American Creed, the allegiance ti the values of “process, liberty, equality, and humanitarianism”, and the nations shameful treatment of black citizens

Brown v. Board of Education
The 1954 Supreme Court decision holding that school segregation in Topeka, Kans., was inherently unconstitutional because it violated the Fourteenth Amendment’s guarantee of equal protection. This case marked the end of legal segregation in the United States.

Montgomery bus boycott
In 1955, after Rosa Parks was arrested for refusing to give up her seat on a city bus, Dr. Martin L. King led a boycott of city busses. After 11 months the Supreme Court ruled that segregation of public transportation was illegal.

Southern Christian Leadership Conference
Headed by Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., a coalition of churches and Christians organizations who met to discuss civil rights.

Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC)
Organized in the fall of 1960 by Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. as a student civil rights movement inspired by sit-ins, it challenged the status quo and walked the back roads of Mississippi and Georgia to encourage Blacks to resist segregation and to register to vote.

Interstate Highway Act
(DDE), now rapid growth of suburban housing, like Levittown, NY , 1956 law that authorized the speding of $32 billion to build 41,000 miles oh highway. The scale of suburban growth would not have been remotely possible without a massive federal program of highway building. Committed to the idea of easing automobile travel, President Eisenhower authorized the first funding of the Interstate system in 1953. Further legislation passed by Congress in 1956 resulted in the Interstate Highway Act. This consisted of multilane expressways that would connect the nations major cities. Biggest public works expedenture in history even bigger than any New Deal program. The new highways eased commutes from suburbs to cities, boosted travel and vacation industries.

Dien Bien Phu
In 1954, Vietminh rebels besieged a French garrison at Dien Bien Phu, deep in the interior of northern Vietnam. In May, after the United States refused to intervene, Dien Bien Phu fell to the communists.

Suez Crisis
Nasser took over the Suez Canal to show separation of Egypt from the West, but Israel, the British, Iraq, and France were all against Nasser’s action. The U.S. stepped in before too much serious fighting began.

Eisenhower Doctrine
Eisenhower proposed and obtained a joint resolution from Congress authorizing the use of U.S. military forces to intervene in any country that appeared likely to fall to communism. Used in the Middle East.

Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC)
an economic organization consisting primarily of Arab nations that controls the price of oil and the amount of oil its members produce and sell to other nations

Landrum-Griffith Act
When the United States was in desperate need of a labor reform, because many union leaders and big industries were involved in many scandals, Congress passed this act to prevent bullying tactics and make labor leaders keep accurate financial records.

U-2 incident
The incident when an American U-2 spy plane was shot down over the Soviet Union. The U.S. denied the true purpose of the plane at first, but was forced to when the U.S.S.R. produced the living pilot and the largely intact plane to validate their claim of being spied on aerially. The incident worsened East-West relations during the Cold War and was a great embarrassment for the United States.

Sputnik
First artificial Earth satellite, it was launched by Moscow in 1957 and sparked U.S. fears of Soviet dominance in technology and outer space. It led to the creation of NASA and the space race.

National Defense Education Act
Passed in response to Sputnik, it provided an oppurtunity and stimulus for college education for many Americans. It allocated funds for upgrading funds in the sciences, foreign language, guidance services, and teaching innovation.

22nd Amendment
Passed in 1951, the amendment that limits presidents to two terms of office.