The 1970s Portal

Clockwise from top left: U.S. President Richard Nixon doing the V for Victory sign after his resignation from office following the Watergate scandal in 1974; The United States was still involved in the Vietnam War in the early decade. The New York Times leaked information regarding the nation's involvement in the war. Political pressure led to America's withdrawal from the war in 1973, and the Fall of Saigon in 1975; the 1973 oil crisis puts the United States in gridlock and causes economic damage throughout the developed world; both the leaders of Israel and Egypt shake hands after the signing of the Camp David Accords in 1978; in 1971, the Pakistan Armed Forces commits the 1971 Bangladesh genocide to curb independence movements in East Pakistan, killing 300,000 to 3,000,000 people; this consequently leads to the Bangladesh Liberation War; the 1970 Bhola cyclone kills an estimated 500,000 people in the densely populated Ganges Delta region of East Pakistan in November 1970, and became the deadliest natural disaster in 40 years; the Iranian Revolution of 1979 ousts Mohammad Reza Pahlavi who is later replaced by an Islamic theocracy led by Ayatollah Khomeini, meanwhile, American hostages would be held by Iran until 1981; the popularity of the disco music genre peaks during the mid-to-late 1970s.

The 1970s (pronounced "nineteen-seventies"; commonly shortened to the "Seventies" or the "'70s") was a decade that began on January 1, 1970, and ended on December 31, 1979.

In the 21st century, historians have increasingly portrayed the 1970s as a "pivot of change" in world history, focusing especially on the economic upheavals[1] that followed the end of the postwar economic boom.[2] On a global scale, it was characterized by frequent coups, domestic conflicts and civil wars, and various political upheavals and armed conflicts which arose from or were related to decolonization, and the global struggle between NATO, the Warsaw Pact, and the Non-Aligned Movement. Many regions had periods of high-intensity conflict, notably Southeast Asia, the Mideast, and Africa.

In the Western world, social progressive values that began in the 1960s, such as increasing political awareness and economic liberty of women, continued to grow. In the United Kingdom, the 1979 election resulted in the victory of its Conservative leader Margaret Thatcher, the first female British Prime Minister. Industrialized countries experienced an economic recession due to an oil crisis caused by oil embargoes by the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries. The crisis saw the first instance of stagflation which began a political and economic trend of the replacement of Keynesian economic theory with neoliberal economic theory, with the first neoliberal government coming to power with the 1973 Chilean coup d'état. The 1970s was also an era of great technological and scientific advances; since the appearance of the first commercial microprocessor, the Intel 4004 in 1971, the decade was characterised by a profound transformation of computing units – by then rudimentary, spacious machines – into the realm of portability and home accessibility.

On the other hand, there were also great advances in fields such as physics, which saw the consolidation of quantum field theory at the end of the decade, mainly thanks to the confirmation of the existence of quarks and the detection of the first gauge bosons in addition to the photon, the Z boson and the gluon, part of what was christened in 1975 as the Standard Model.

In Asia, the People's Republic of China's international relations changed significantly following its recognition by the United Nations, the death of Mao Zedong and the beginning of market liberalization by Mao's successors. Despite facing an oil crisis due to the OPEC embargo, the economy of Japan witnessed a large boom in this period, overtaking the economy of West Germany to become the second-largest in the world.[3] The United States withdrew its military forces from the Vietnam War. In 1979, the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan, which led to the Soviet–Afghan War.

The 1970s saw an initial increase in violence in the Middle East as Egypt and Syria declared war on Israel, but in the late 1970s, the situation in the Middle East was fundamentally altered when Egypt signed the Egyptian–Israeli Peace Treaty. Political tensions in Iran exploded with the Iranian Revolution in 1979, which overthrew the Pahlavi dynasty and established an Islamic republic under the leadership of Ayatollah Khomeini.

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Star Wars (retroactively retitled Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope) is a 1977 American epic space opera film written and directed by George Lucas, produced by Lucasfilm and distributed by 20th Century-Fox. It was the first film released in the Star Wars film series and the fourth chronological chapter of the "Skywalker Saga". Set "a long time ago" in a fictional universe where the galaxy is ruled by the tyrannical Galactic Empire, the story focuses on a group of freedom fighters known as the Rebel Alliance, who aim to destroy the Empire's newest weapon, the Death Star. When Rebel leader Princess Leia is apprehended by the Empire, Luke Skywalker acquires stolen architectural plans of the Death Star and sets out to rescue her while learning the ways of a metaphysical power known as "the Force" from Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi. The cast includes Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Peter Cushing, Alec Guinness, David Prowse, James Earl Jones, Anthony Daniels, Kenny Baker, and Peter Mayhew.

Lucas had the idea for a science-fiction film in the vein of Flash Gordon around the time he completed his first film, THX 1138 (1971), and began working on a treatment after the release of American Graffiti (1973). After numerous rewrites, filming took place throughout 1975 and 1976 in locations including Tunisia and Elstree Studios in Hertfordshire, England. The film suffered production difficulties; the cast and crew involved believed the film would be a failure. Lucas formed the visual effects company Industrial Light & Magic to help create the film's special effects. It also went $3 million over budget due to delays. (Full article...)
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  • ... that in addition to creating milkshake products, Keventers Milkshake was also a major supplier of various milk products to the Indian Army for several decades up until the 1970s?
  • ... that Suzie Zuzek's impactful 1960s and 1970s textile designs for Lilly Pulitzer dresses were recovered from under floorboards?
  • ... that during the 1960s and 1970s, American artist Robert Bauer painted figures that were a mixture of 20th-century avant-garde funk and 17th-century Dutch realism?
  • ... that despite an attempted "extermination" of homosexuals in the 1960s and 1970s, the LGBT community in Argentina is now the most accepted in Latin America?
  • ... that Zdzisław Najmrodzki, a thief in 1970s–1980s Poland, escaped from law-enforcement authorities and prisons on 29 occasions?
  • ... that the art of Irma Blank, of "drawing languages without words" and including sounds, was recognised in the 1970s but fell into obscurity until a rediscovery in the 2010s?

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Bowie in 2002

David Robert Jones (8 January 1947 – 10 January 2016), known professionally as David Bowie (/ˈbi/ BOH-ee), was an English singer, songwriter, musician, and actor. A leading figure in the music industry, he is regarded as one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century. Bowie was acclaimed by critics and musicians, particularly for his innovative work during the 1970s. His career was marked by reinvention and visual presentation, and his music and stagecraft had a significant impact on popular music.

Bowie developed an interest in music from an early age. He studied art, music and design before embarking on a professional career as a musician in 1963. He released a string of unsuccessful singles with local bands and a solo album before achieving his first top five entry on the UK Singles Chart with "Space Oddity", released in 1969. After a period of experimentation, he re-emerged in 1972 during the glam rock era with the flamboyant and androgynous alter ego Ziggy Stardust. The character was spearheaded by the success of "Starman" and album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars, which won him widespread popularity. In 1975, Bowie's style shifted towards a sound he characterised as "plastic soul", initially alienating many of his UK fans but garnering him his first major US crossover success with the number-one single "Fame" and the album Young Americans. In 1976, Bowie starred in the cult film The Man Who Fell to Earth and released Station to Station. In 1977, he again changed direction with the electronic-inflected album Low, the first of three collaborations with Brian Eno that came to be known as the Berlin Trilogy. "Heroes" (1977) and Lodger (1979) followed; each album reached the UK top five and received lasting critical praise. (Full article...)

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  1. ^ Howard Brick, "Review", American Historical Review (2012) 117#5 p 1537
  2. ^ Marglin, Stephen A.; Schor, Juliet B. (1992). Golden Age of Capitalism: Reinterpreting the Postwar Experience – Oxford Scholarship. doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198287414.001.0001. ISBN 9780198287414.
  3. ^ Hays, Jeffrey (August 2012). "Economic History of Japan in the 1970a and 80s". Facts and Details. Archived from the original on 2012-05-19. Retrieved 2012-12-02.
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