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Postmodernism: Historical Contexts

1945
Germany Surrenders
U.S. drops atomic bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki; WWII ends

1946
Churchill’s Iron Curtain speech marks the beginning of the cold war (New kind of war)

1947
India’s independence from the British Empire (post colonialism) 

1948
Gandhi assassinated in India

1949
U.S.S.R. tests atomic bomb; arms race
Mao declares the People’s Republic of China; rise of communism

1952
First successful test of the hydrogen bomb
Eisenhower elected; would coin the term military-industrial complex

1953
Senator Joseph McCarthy claims communist in the State Department

1957
National Guard is called to protect desegregation in Little Rock
Soviets Launch Sputnik; space race begins

1958
NASA Founded
Integrated circuit invented (instrumental in the later development of electronics–computers; cell phones)

1959
Cuban revolution; Castro assumes power
Xerox makes the first copier

1960
Kennedy elected
Laser invented
First Birth control pill approved

1961
Berlin wall erected
Soviets put the first man in space
Edward Lorenz begins work on chaos theory
V., Thomas Pynchon

1962
Cuban missile crisis
First telecommunications satellite

1963
MLK civil rights march on Washington
Kennedy assassinated

1965
Malcolm X assasinated
Civil rights march; Selma to Montgomery

1967
Floppy discs!

1968
Withdrawal from Vietnam begins 
MLK assassinated
Robert Kennedy assasinated

1969
Moon landing 
ARPANET commissioned by the DoD; forerunner to the internet
First microprocessor

1970
First complete gene synthesized (Madison, WI)
Compact Disc
First videocasette  recoder

1971
First microchips produced
Disneyworld opens (Hyperreal; Baudrillard)

1973
Deconstruction gains popularity; Derrida

1975
First desktop microcomputer
Bill Gates and Paul Allen form Microsoft

1976
Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs form Apple 

1978
First test tube baby

1979
The Postmodern Condition, Lyotard 

1980
Reagan elected

1981
First space shuttle launch
MTV premieres with the song “Video Killed the Radio Star”
Simulacra and Simulation; Bauldrillard 

1982
AIDS identified in U.S.
IBM PC marketed

1986
Challenger explodes
Chernobyl accident
First license to market living organisms produced by genetic engineering 

1987
Beloved, Morrison 

 

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War/Military Action
Political Action of Interest
Invention, Science and Commercial Production of Interest
Publications Theorists of Interest 

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