THE ‘70’S
The 1970s decade refers to the years from 1970 to 1979; it is commonly called The Seventies. The seventies were considered by Tom Wolfe as the "Me Decade." A notable exception was the tremendous growth in environmentalism. The 1970s gave rise to home personal computers which Apple and Microsoft corporations had its start. Cinema saw the emergence of great directors like Steven Spielberg and George Lucas. Music shifted away from the tired standards of the early seventies to New Wave music.


The perception of the established institutions of nuclear family, religion and trust in one's government continued to lose ground during this time. By the end of the decade, the feminist movement had helped change women's working conditions. The hippie culture, which started in the 1960s, peaked in the early 1970s and carried on through the end of the decade. The United States' withdrawal from its extensive military involvement in Vietnam and the resignation of Richard Nixon helped bring about a sense of malaise which continued through the Jimmy Carter Presidency and mistrust in political authority.
The United States experienced an economic recession, but the economy of Japan prospered. The economies of many third world countries continued to make steady progress in the early 1970s, because of the green revolution. They might have thrived and become stable in the way that Europe recovered after the war through the Marshall Plan; however, their economic growth was slowed by the oil crisis.
Other common global ethos of the seventies world include: increasingly flexible and varied gender roles for women in industrialised societies. More women could enter the work force. However, the gender role of men remained as that of a bread-winner. The period also saw the socioeconomic effect of an ever-increasing number of women entering the non-agrarian economic workforce. The Iranian revolution also affected global attitudes to and among those of the Muslim faith toward the end of the 1970s.



In Australia, the seventies was a defining decade. After 23 years of rule under various Coalition Prime Ministers, the Labor Party under Gough Whitlam was elected under the slogan "It's Time", a group of people singing for the end of the Coalition government. Whitlam brought sweeping education reforms including free University places, and Medibank (later Medicare), the first fully public hospital system. The Whitlam government was also pro-multicultural and supported greater immigration during their term.
However, after all of Whitlam's social reforms, the government was nearly broke. The Coalition under Malcolm Fraser took advantage of a newly-acquired majority in the Senate and drove the public service to near bankruptcy by refusing to allow the passage of money bills through the Senate. In response, Whitlam was controversially dismissed as Prime Minister by the Governor-General Sir John Kerr during the 1975 Australian constitutional crisis.
Despite these moves, Fraser toed a not too dissimilar line of politics, despite predictions of the conservative Murdoch press and his party. He did make cuts to public spending to reign in inflation and the deficits caused by the Whitlam government. He also formed Medibank Private to reduce the strain in the public hospital system. However, he introduced Special Broadcasting Service to ensure a multicultural representation on TV, and supported the end of Apartheid in South Africa.




SOCIAL MOVEMENTS: FEMINISM, ENVIRONMENTALISM

Environmentalism
The 1970s started a mainstream affirmation of the environmental issues early activists from the 1960s, such as Rachel Carson and Murray Bookchin had warned of. The moon landing that had occurred at the end of the previous decade transmitted back concrete images of the Earth as an integrated, life-supporting system and shaped a public willingness to preserve nature. On April 22, 1970, the United States celebrated its first Earth Day in which over two thousand colleges and universities and roughly ten thousand primary and secondary schools participated.

Feminism
Main article: Second-wave feminism
Feminism in the United States got its start in the 1960s, but began to take flight starting in 1970, with the fiftieth anniversary of the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution (which legalized female suffrage).
With the anthology //Sisterhood is Powerful// and other works being published at the start of the decade, feminism started to reach a larger audience than ever before.
No-Fault divorce laws paved the way for increased divorce rates, as depicted in the movie Irreconcilable Differences, and divorce became widely acceptable in western countries.

Second-wave feminism refers to a period of feminist activity which began during the 1960s and lasted through the late 1970s. Where first-wave feminism focused on overturning legal (//de jure//) obstacles to equality, second-wave feminism addressed unofficial (de facto) inequalities as well.

THE RISE OF DISCO MUSIC

Well-known late 1970s disco performers included Bee Gees, Donna Summer and The Jacksons. Summer would become the first well-known and most popular female disco artist, and also played a part in pioneering the electronic sound that later became a part of disco. Behind-the-scenes producers played an equal, if not more important role in disco, since they often wrote the songs and created the innovative sounds and production techniques that were part of the "disco sound". Many non-disco artists recorded disco songs at the height of disco's popularity, and films such as Saturday Night Fever and Thank God It's Friday contributed to disco's rise in mainstream popularity
By the late 1970s many major US cities had thriving disco club scenes which were centered around discotheques, nightclubs, and private loft parties where DJs would play disco hits through powerful PA systems for the dancers. Some of the most prestigious clubs had elaborate lighting systems that throbbed to the beat of the music.
Some cities had disco dance instructors or dance schools which taught people how to do popular disco dances such as "touch dancing", "the hustle" and "the cha cha." There were also disco fashions that discotheque-goers wore for nights out at their local disco, such as sheer, flowing Halston dresses for women and shiny polyester Qiana shirts for men with pointy collars, preferably open at the chest, often worn with double-knit suit jackets.


VIETNAM WAR
The Vietnam War, also known as the Second Indochina War, the Vietnam Conflict, and, in Vietnam, the American War, occurred from March 1959 to April 30, 1975. The war was fought between the communist Democratic Republic of Vietnam (North Vietnam) and its communist allies and the US-supported Republic of Vietnam (South Vietnam).

Throughout the conflict the less equipped and trained Vietcong fought a guerilla war and North Vietnamese soldiers fought a conventional war against US forces in the region, using the jungles of Vietnam to spring deadly ambushes whilst the United States used overwhelming firepower in artillery and aircraft to grind down offensives and potential Vietcong bases. In particular, Huey helicopters played a decisive role in air-lifting supplies and when later upgraded with rockets and machine guns took part in the heavy ground conflicts.

In 1965 the United States sent in troops to prevent the South Vietnamese government from collapsing. However they failed to achieve their goal and in 1975 Vietnam was reunified under Communist control; in 1976 it officially became the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.

During the conflict, approximately 3 to 4 million Vietnamese on both sides were killed, in addition to another 1.5 to 2 million Lao and Cambodians who were drawn into the war.

Communist forces
North Vietnam
Vietnam Viet Cong
Khmer Rouge
Pathet Lao
People's Republic of China
Soviet Union
North Korea



Anti-Communist forces
South Vietnam
United States
South Korea
Australia
Philippines
New Zealand
Khmer Republic
Thailand
Kingdom of Laos