Final Update/Summary: The reflection of political climate in popular music

After analyzing, piecing everything together, and editing, I have finished my Freshman Monroe Summer Research Final paper covering all of my research and thought I have put into this investigation this summer. After researching music during WWII and Vietnam separately, I spent some time comparing and contrasting before writing my final paper and came up with these conclusions: [Read more…]

Update 2: How the popular music during the Vietnam War reflected the political climate in the US

For my second update, I will be discussing the rest of my research for my investigation. The second half of my research was on the background information, political climate, and popular music during the Vietnam War era in the United States. While I talked about the unity in the United States during WWII in my last update and how that affected the music of the time, I found the Vietnam War to bring an entirely different side out of the American public. It was because of these sharp contrasts in political climate during each of these events that I chose to study them both in the first place, but I will discuss more about the comparisons and contrasts in my next post.

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Update 1: How the popular music during WWII reflected the political climate in the US

After finishing the first part of my research, I am posting my first update on the information I have found for my investigation into how political climate affects music. As I discussed in my first post, I am specifically investigating the political influence on popular music in America during WWII in contrast to the Vietnam War. In this post, I will be discussing my research on the historical background and music of WWII.

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Abstract: How the political climate influences music

Throughout time, music of all forms has been used as a political outlet for musicians to reflect on the political events of the time. This study will specifically analyze how the political climate in America during WWII and the Vietnam War influenced and shaped the music during this time. While WWII was broadly seen as a time of unity with all citizens contributing towards the American victory on the home front and abroad, the Vietnam War divided society, with many citizens disapproving the government’s decisions and resenting the acts of American soldiers abroad. This study will focus on the comparison between these two political events and how the music of the time reflected these differences between unity and divide. The findings of this study aim to show a strong connection between politics and music. This connection would suggest that music can be used to educate the general population on political history and current events in an engaging and innovative way, and to voice opinions in times of political conflict in a constructive and useful way, rather than using violence and forceful speech to get messages across. By understanding the deeper meanings of songs and how they reflect the political climate, people can learn about their world and gain empathy towards their forefathers and fellow citizens, which is what I hope to show through this analyzation of the influence of the political climate on music.

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