Daily Life During the Cold War
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Introduction:
The Cold War had a great impact on all of America, including culture and literature. It brought many changes to the lives of American citizens. People became more interested in religion, and the amount of people who attended church increased.
Impact of the Cold War:
The world seemed so dangerous at the time, and people were nervous and insecure. To cope with this, they started to focus more on more important values, such as religion and family. As a result, the divorce rate declined, people married younger, and the birth rate grew dramatically. They thought materialistic items were important, causing the era to be known for automobiles, television and shopping malls.The television was the most popular and developed means of communication, and reflected the values of the cold war. Shows, such as I Love Lucy, showed demonstrated the roles of women, and family values. Lower class people never appeared on television.


The atomic bomb, and threat of nuclear war caused people to live in fear. They started building backyard bomb shelters, and they soon became a huge industry. Bomb shelters were typically made out of concrete or metal containers. This fear consumed people's daily lives.
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Children were forced to learn safety procedures and how to protect themselves during an attack. They watched a video called "Duck and Cover", and often had safety drills during the day. Any time a bell rang indicating a nuclear threat, they would know what to do.

Significance:
The Atomic bomb greatly affected people's daily lives. Because of the threat of nuclear war, people had to change routines. They had to take extra caution in what they did and where they went just in case nuclear war broke out. It not only affected people, but also the landscape. he ground had to be dug up in order for people to be able to build their under ground bomb shelters.

Women During the 1950s:
The ideal role for a female during the 1950s was to take care of the house and raise a family. Because of the rising birth and marriage rates, women were becoming mothers and wives at much earlier ages. By 1950, the rate of women working in factory jobs started to increase again, and eventually 35% of all women were working in the labor force.
Even though families and home life were so important, divorces became more frequent. The number of marriages that took place annually started to decline.
During the 50s, the percent of women who attended college declined- colleges wanted to bring veterans who were under the GI Bill into their school rather than women. A lot of females who were enrolled in school dropped out early mainly because they wanted to get married. Teachers thought they were not going to have a great career, and that women should learn to take care of their family and society; they were encouraged to take classes in decorating, and finance.
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Women and Media:
Because women bought the majority of products sold in the United States, advertisements were aimed at women. Magazines were filled with pictures that showed women as housewives, focusing on their home and the needs of their family. However, women started to have more free time and gained interest in things other than their family responsibilities. They took up real jobs, including social organizations, and volunteer work. As women started spending less time at home and more time away, observers thought they were putting their families in danger. they though they were being neglected, and not being taken care of. The roles of husbands and wives started to switch, and both of them were doing each others "jobs". They both accepted the changing roles, but this change was fully blamed on the women. It was said that if they're real women, they will take and accept their responsibilities as a wife and mother. Even though a lot of people placed blame on them, women were still very thankful for the new opportunities they gained.
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Significance:
Women were continuously treated as if they were "lower" in the society than men. People felt that were supposed to stay at home to take care of their house and raise their children, and because of the baby boom and earlier marriages, it was typical that they did. However, roles started changing, and women started taking up jobs in factories and having more free time.
Impact of Communism
During the years of the Cold War, Americans feared that the communists would take over their country and government. Senator Joseph McCarthy, a strong anti-communist, rose to power. McCarthy began to randomly accuse people of being communists. He made long lists of people he thought were part of the communist party, and read them off to the public. Once he started accusing members of the Army, people grew suspicious and thought McCarthy was a devious man.
McCarthy

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Republicans thought President Truman was taking this matter too lightly, and not doing enough to put an end to communism, so he set up different acts and committees.
The Loyalty Review Board- Employees of the government were questioned and investigated upon the government's request. If they were found to be disloyal to the US, they were fired.
The Black List- Because people believed that communist actors were trying to bring propaganda into the movies, executives issued this "black list." These actors, actresses, or writers and directors, were all accused of having some sort of communist background. They were no longer allowed to work, and their careers were destroyed. Significance:Due to the fear that communism was taking over and people were becoming loyal to the Soviet Union, Americans were forced to take loyalty oaths, and people were scared to voice their opinions and tell how they felt.

Works Cited
Berg, Timothy. "Cold War." Bowling, Beatniks, and Bell-Bottoms: Pop Culture of 20th-Century America. Ed. Sara Pendergast and Tom Pendergast. Vol. 3: 1940s-1950s. Detroit: UXL, 2002. 621-624. Gale U.S. History In Context. Web. 26 Apr. 2012.

Danzer, Gerald A., J. Jorge Klor de Alva, Larry S. Krieger, Louis E. Wilson, and Nancy Woloch. The Americans. 1st. 1. Evanston, IL: McDougal Littell, 2007. 822-24. Print.

Deery, Phillip, and Karen Bruner. "Popular Fears: Did the Fear of Communism After World War II Come from the Grassroots Level of American Society?" History in Dispute. Ed. Robbie Lieberman. Vol. 19: The Red Scare After 1945. Detroit: St. James Press, 2005. 245-253. Gale U.S. History In Context. Web. 30 Apr. 2012.

Hanes, Sharon M., Richard Clay Hanes, and Lawrence W. Baker. Cold War Primary Sources. 1st. 1. Farmington Hills: Thomson Gale, 2004. Print.
Kozol, Wendy. "Progressive Women in Conservative Times: Racial Justice, Peace, and Feminism, 1945 to the 1960s." The Journal of Interdisciplinary History 25.3 (1995): 546+. Gale U.S. History In Context. Web. 26 Apr. 2012.

"The Cold War and U.S. Popular Culture." The Cold War. Ed. Walter Hixson. Woodbridge, CT: Primary Source Media, 2000. American Journey. Gale U.S. History In Context. Web. 26 Apr. 2012.

"Women's Roles in the 1950s." American Decades. Ed. Judith S. Baughman, et al. Vol. 6: 1950-1959. Detroit: Gale, 2001. 278-280. Gale U.S. History In Context. Web. 27 Apr. 2012.