Segments in this Video

"Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau" (01:39)


The marine life documentary "Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau" reflected the 1960s as a decade of discovery, change and psychedelia. It also promoted French culture and boosted yacht sales.

Tet Offensive (02:51)

Goldie Hawn appeared in Martin and Rowan's comedy sketch show "Laugh-In." Pop song "Everlasting Love" coincided with the Vietnamese attack that drove many Americans to start questioning the U.S. role in Vietnam, including Walter Cronkite.

"Walk Away Renée" (01:55)

"Walk Away Renée," recorded by the Four Tops, combined Bob Dylan's folk style with soul. In February 1968, Memphis sanitation workers went on strike and protested being called "boy."

1968 Presidential Race (01:09)

Robert F. Kennedy announced his candidacy after Lyndon B. Johnson's decision not to run. Young Americans were excited about his Civil Rights and anti-war platform.

"The Mighty Quinn" (02:46)

Claude Chabrol's film "Les Biches" addressed power and manipulation. Learn about Bob Dylan's song "The Mighty Quinn" recorded by Manfred Mann. On March 22, 1968, a meeting of left wing activists and students began demonstrations in Paris.

King's Assassination (03:53)

Stanley Kubrick's film "2001: A Space Odyssey" addressed concerns about artificial intelligence. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s April 3 Memphis speech foreshadowed his death the next day. Bonnie Greer recalls Robert Kennedy announcing the news. James Brown helped diffuse riots in Boston.

Paris Riots (01:37)

May 1968 marked a turning point in French culture; unions supported student protestors. Many people thought there would be another revolution.

Kennedy's Assassination (03:08)

"Hello, I Love You" by the Doors was a 1968 hit. On June 5, Palestinian Sirhan Sirhan shot the democratic candidate at the Ambassador Hotel. As a result, Hubert Humphrey lost the election to Richard Nixon.

Prague Spring (02:49)

Greek band Aphrodite's Child became stuck in Paris and recorded "Rain and Tears." Learn about Alexander Dubcek's reforms and the Soviet Union's creation of the Warsaw Pact and invasion of Czechoslovakia.

Chicago Riots (04:38)

Marvin Gaye's "I Heard it Through the Grapevine" warned of approaching trouble. Learn about unrest at the 1968 DNC, including police brutality. Abbie Hoffman's Yippie demonstrations in the Hilton Hotel were televised across America.

"60 Minutes" (03:16)

"Hawaii Five-O" debuted in September 1968, becoming the longest running police series in American television. "60 Minutes" featured current events in an investigative journalism framework. Learn about blind Puerto Rican guitarist Jose Feliciano's version of "Light My Fire."

1968 Olympics (02:47)

Jimi Hendrix's "All Along the Watchtower" showcased his musical talent. Learn about Tommie Smith and John Carlos' Black Power salute at the podium in Mexico City.

"Night of the Living Dead" (02:44)

The chase scene from Steve McQueen's "Bullitt" popularized Ford Mustangs in 1968. "Night of the Living Dead" was the first counter-cultural horror film commenting on U.S. events.

Political Changes (02:02)

Violence, counter-culture and civil unrest of 1968 culminated in a movement towards conservatism and Nixon's election. He promised to end the Vietnam War. Yale and Vassar changed from single sex universities to co-educational systems.

Spaghetti Westerns (01:54)

Fleetwood Mac's "Albatross" topped the U.K. charts. Sergio Leone's "Once Upon a Time in the West" starring Henry Fonda became a cultural classic.

Apollo Eight (02:31)

On Christmas Eve, 1968, the NASA mission captured images of Earth from the moon. "Time Magazine" named crew members men of the year. Stevie Wonder's uplifting single "For Once in My Life" closed the year optimistically.

Credits: 1968 - A Year of War, Turmoil & Beyond (00:34)

Credits: 1968 - A Year of War, Turmoil & Beyond

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1968: A Year of War, Turmoil & Beyond

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In January 1968, a surprise attack by the North Vietnamese, known as the Tet Offensive, convinced many Americans that the war was not going to end very soon. Large scale opposition flared against the Johnson administration and its policies. Federal troops put down race riots while bitter protests erupted on campuses in the USA. In Paris that May, there was a “social revolution”. In Germany, a student movement driven by Rudi Dutschke reached fever pitch. The optimistic “Prague Spring” provided fuel for the Soviet invasion later in the year. Two extraordinary champions for change, Martin Luther King Jr. and Senator Robert F. Kennedy, were both brutally assassinated. The Mexico Olympics provided a big moment for 1968 with Tommie Smith and John Carlos’ black gloved fists at the ceremonies. Barbarella caused a stir in the cinema. HAL the beginning of the computer age in Kubrick’s 2001 and Charlton Heston’s dramatic realization in Planet of the Apes were also signs of change. Aretha Franklin hit the scene with Think. Mary Hopkins iconic hit Those Were the Days dominated the airwaves across the world, and the anthemic Born to be Wild by Steppenwolf and Arthur Brown’s Fire a backdrop to the times. A search for meaning in space developed with the first full picture of the Earth coming back from Apollo 8. The world was changing. The space age was arriving and the dawn of a new era was upon us. Interviewees include: Joe Boyd, Music Producer; Will Hodgkinson, Times Music critic and writer; Bonnie Greer, Author and Journalist; Neil Norman, Music and Film critic; Derek Malcolm, Film Critic Cannes Film Festival; Tim Weiner, Pulitzer winning reporter and author on the FBI; Richard Gid Powers, US author and Journalist.

Length: 47 minutes

Item#: BVL150034

ISBN: 978-1-64347-539-4

Copyright date: ©2018

Closed Captioned

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