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Year 9 - Vis Com: Post War (1945-1960)

Historical Context

After World War II there is a period of change and development which was wary of repeating the errors of Post World War I such as bankrupting Germany with war reparations. In Europe countries and economies were destroyed and people were displaced. To avoid the errors of the Versaille Treaty a plan was set up by US Secretary of State George Marshall called The Marshall Plan. This looked at allocating reparations to each country, looking at displaced people and rebuilding.

There are different things which define the Post War Period depending on which country you are looking at. Some major historical things which happened in this period (which is understood to span from 1945 to 1970) include:

  • The Cold War (1947-1991) - this was not a war as such but a stand off between Western Democratic Countries (Western Bloc) and Soviet Union and its Communist Allies (Eastern Bloc). It escalated when boths sides had Nuclear Weapons but never amounted to an armed conflict.
  • Korean War (1950-1953) - Battle between Communist North and Democratic South of Korea. A conflict in which US and Australia participated.
  • Civil Rights Movement (1954-1968) in USA
  • Vietnam war ( 1955-1975) - Battle between Communist North and Democratic South Vietnam referred to by the Vietnamese as "The American War". A conflict in which US and Australia participated.
  • Post War migration (from Europe to UK, USA and Australia)



Books in the othe De La Salle Libraries

Cultural/Social Context

After World War II there was an explosion of the population in both Australia and the US which is referred to as the Baby Boom.

This generation created great cultural change and started building the wealth of the nation. 

Other cultural changes which came at this time include 

  • Rock n Roll
  • Civil Rights Movement
  • Television
  • Space Age

Books in the HE Library

Design Elements

The Post War period brought great change to fashion, art and commercial design. Mass production of products, wartime inventions and an attitude of positive prosperity (consumerism) allowed the new styles to move ahead with often little reference to design of the past generations.

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