Source analysis – life in the cold war u.s. (history)

Read “Life in the U.S. During the Cold War,” attached, and take notes about what it was like to live in the U.S. during this unique period of history. Then, watch the videos linked below. Family Life During the Cold War 1945-1991 looks at the sense of social and cultural conformity that overtook the nation during this period by examining a 1955 novel by Sloan Wilson entitled The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit. What does this video tell us about life during the Cold War, particularly for American men? The next video is called What is McCarthyism? And how did it happen? It takes a brief look at the McCarthy Era, a period of extreme paranoia in the U.S. when civil liberties were ignored in what amounted to a witch hunt for communism. How seriously did some Americans take the threat of communism during the Cold War? The last video is a 1957 sociological study called Crisis in Levittown, PA. This mini-documentary explores an incident of racism that occurred in Levittown, Pennsylvania, the second mega-suburb built by the Levitt brothers (see the reading for more info). Some white residents of that community rioted after a single black family moved in. What racial tensions existed in the U.S. during the Cold War?

Family Life During the Cold War 1945-1991 (10 minutes)

What is McCarthyism? And how did it happen? (6 minutes)

Crisis in Levittown, PA (32 minutes)

For the writing, answer the four questions below using evidence from the given sources.

  1. Explain the specific factors that contributed to American Cold War anxiety.
  2. Although it was a period of remarkable general prosperity, what challenges did Cold War American families face, and how did it impact them?
  3. In what ways did the U.S. government deny American citizens their civil liberties during the McCarthy Era?
  4. Based on Crisis in Levittown, what were the various perspectives on black-white relations in the United States during the 1950s?

You must take your answers from the sources, and you must indicate from which source you are taking your answers by citing them using the following system exactly:

The attached reading  (READ)
Family Life During the Cold War                               (FAM)
What is McCarthyism?                                                  (MC)
Crisis in Levittown                                                  (CRISIS)

For example: “Some white residents of Levittown believed that racial tensions would eventually blow over (CRISIS).” You must use the system exactly, with the abbreviations in parentheses in all capital letters.

There is no minimum or maximum word count, and there are no instructions for formatting. The homework is due in 28 hours.

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