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Explore the Decades - 1970s

1970s Newspaper Gifts

The 1970s featured heat waves, power cuts, an end to the hippy movement and the emergence of modern computing. The materialism of the 1960s and oil embargoes in the Middle East led to an economic recession. Big businesses raised their prices leading to anti-corporation hostility and the rapid pace of social change caused problems. Trade unions gathered in power due to a focus on the rights of workers and strikes littered the decade. Feminism continued to flourish; women went to work and some were elected into powerful positions for the first time, such as Margaret Thatcher in 1979. Billie Jean King beat Bobby Riggs in the “Battle of the Sexes” tennis match, strengthening women’s position in sport.

Hollywood released blockbusters such as “Star Wars” and the ‘Chick Flick’ was born with films including “Love Story”. Literature went back to classic storytelling and gentle pop music such as The Eagles and The Carpenters was initially popular. Disco emerged following “Saturday Night Fever” and “Grease” was also released. However, growing frustration and anti-establishment feeling led to a more edgy pop culture towards the end of the decade. Glam Rock and Punk music emerged, fashion became increasingly outrageous and horror novels became popular.