Folk Music and the New Left in the Sixties


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About the Book

Artists have often provided the earliest demonstrations of conscience and ethical examination in response to political events. The political shifts that took place in the 1960s were addressed by a revival of folk music as an expression of protest, hope and the courage to imagine a better world. This work explores the relationship between the cultural and political ideologies of the 1960s and the growing folk music movement, with a focus on musicians Phil Ochs; Joan Baez; Peter, Paul and Mary; Carolyn Hester and Bob Dylan.

About the Author(s)

The late Michael Scott Cain taught English, literature and popular culture at the college level for more than 40 years. He was an editor for, covering jazz, blues and poetry and was the author of seven books of poetry, four novels and several works of nonfiction.

Bibliographic Details

Michael Scott Cain
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 205
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2019
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7472-8
eISBN: 978-1-4766-3595-8
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface 1
Introduction 5

Part I. Mississippi Needs Folk Singers
1. Background 16
2. Senator Keating Discovers a Crack in the Nation’s Foundation 25
3. The Schizophrenic World of the Protest Song 31
4. Bob Moses Attacks Mississippi 34
5. Here’s to the State of Mississippi 40
6. Carolyn Hester Goes to Mississippi 46
7. Joan Baez Boards the Mississippi Train 52
8. Peter, Paul and Mary 59
9. Bob Dylan: The Reluctant Spokesman 64
10. After the Summer Comes the Fall 72

Part II. “Hey, Hey, LBJ, How May Kids Did You Kill Today?”
11. The Radicalizing of Tom Hayden 76
12. Lyndon Johnson Fights a War on Two Fronts: In Vietnam and in the Streets 83
13. The Music of the People 91
14. Music and the Prefigurative Culture 99
15. Rise of the Prefigurative Culture 104
16. “Lyndon Johnson Told the Nation” 111
17. Impatience Leads to Escalation 116
18. The Chicago Seven Get Famous 124
19. The New Left Loses Its Credibility 127
20. The Shift in Academia: What Is Relevant? 133

Part III. Burn, Baby, Burn
21. Radicalism in Both Politics and Music Dies 140
22. The Death of Music as Revolution 152
23. You Don’t Need a Weatherman… 159

Conclusion 166
Chapter Notes 177
Bibliography 184
Index 189