"The Personal Is Political”: U.S. Social History after World War II

History 103D.003

Fall 2018
3104 Dwinelle
Day & Time: 
F 10-12
Class Number: 

"The personal is political” declared feminists in the 1960s. They viewed marriage, career, and family as personal choices constrained by political policies. African Americans also sought personal freedoms, such as public access to restaurants, hotels, and schools, which similarly ignited political firestorms. Many other groups, such as Latinos, Native Americans, and gays also recognized the personal as political in the post-War II years. And in many cases, individuals and groups overlapped, sometimes with conflicting claims! Meanwhile, more empowered individuals and groups reacted to these new personal claims with claims of their own, all of which shook political ideologies and reconfigured political alignments. In this course, through an analysis of primary and secondary sources, we will consider the following questions: Why did the personal and the political intersect so strongly at this time? How did the claims and methods of one group influence other groups? How can understanding the combustion of the personal and the political help us understand our own time of Black Lives Matter, Me Too, and Make America Great Again?