The Vietnam War Culture By: Jacob McMahon


The Vietnam war changed the culture in America dramatically. Most people before the war preached love and peace. But then the war came along and turned 18 year old hippies into cold blooded killing machines. It was a dramatic culture shock to Americans.

Shows how people want peace.


The tactics used in this war were know as guerrilla warfare. Americans were fighting in conditions never seen by us before. We were fighting in the Vietnamese jungles, so we were forced to adapt to where we were and who we fought. A tactic used was blending in as locals. There was also a lot tunnels used by the enemies which caused our troops to use more guerrilla warfare.

Home Front

America during the war was different then we were used to. Kids were going to war as soon as they were eligible, hippies were against the war, and this was the first televised war. Which gave people a real look at the death and made them glad to be safe in America. Many people were against the war. There were lost of protests and people leaving America because the war.


Most of the music during the war was peaceful and was against the war. Most musicians were hippies and were against the war. Popular bands include The Beatles, The box tops, Jimmy Hendrix, and the Animals. Music was big for the soldiers as well as citizens back in America. Music was the one thing keeping them connected to America. Music was very influential on the soldiers, and also to the people. Music preached peace through bands like the Beatles which sparked protests for peace. Musics role in the war was huge to say the least.


The propaganda used during the war was mostly pushing to end the war. Posters were made to make people want to end the war. The propaganda showed how bad war was and how no one really wins, it wanted the people to rebel against the war and ultimately get the government to end the war.


Protests were very popular during the Vietnam War. Due to the propaganda and culture of the United States at the time, no one wanted the war. People held rally's for peace and to show the government how against the war they were. These rally pushed for peace and to end the war. There were many protests and they had many followers. It seemed as if the whole country was against the war except the people calling the shots. Protesting was the peoples way of fighting the war, against the war not with the war. The largest protest was on October 21, 1967 at the Lincoln Memorial with over 100,000 people!


Media had a strong influence on the war. The Vietnam war was the first war that the public could see whats going on through television, magazines, news paper, and the radio. Media also sparked protests and served as propaganda for antiwar. The media showed what was going on in the war and highlighted how bad war was. 93% of Americans had Tv's in 1966. That was a lot of people seeing the horrors of the war. Plus everyone had access to news papers and magazines which also showed graphics of the war. And if they didn't get enough of seeing it, they could flip on the radio to hear about the war. The media showed the public more then it needed about the war.


The Economy- During the war the economy was not doing too well because the factories used to make goods were making military equipment to try and help the war. Not to mention how much money the Government had to spend to fund the war. This put us in larger economic debt and hurt the economy. Kennedy's economics policies may have been more successful if we weren't spending all the money to fund a war no one wanted.


The war cause America to consider all of its policies to please the people. The Government created the war power solution's, which limited the amount of troops a president could send without congressional approval. The Government also created an volunteer only army unless a draft is needed. The Vietnam war also served as a lesson for the Government to watch what they get themselves into as far as foreign affairs.


The draft was devastating to the families in America. 17 and 18 year old boys were being shipped off to war where many died. Some people went to Canada to escape the draft. These were called draft dodgers. Some people just braved up and went, and some didn't return. It was hard for families to have to think of loosing their kids so young, but it was a reality for most families. The draft was awful no doubt, and its not surprising people did everything they could to avoid getting drafted into possible death for something they didn't support.

Family Roles

With most men leaving for the war, lost of pressure to keep things running back home fell on the women. They had to pick up the jobs and duties of men who were off fighting. Families were ripped apart by the war with husbands, sons, brothers, etc being drafted and taken to war. Many families were left worrying if their loved ones were still alive by the end of the war. Families had a tough go when it came to the war. But as old families were destroyed and ripped apart, new brotherhoods and bonds were formed to take place of family in Vietnam. People still loved their old families and returned to them if they lived, but the bonds formed were also very big part of family as as well.

Re- Integration

The re-integration was hard for many. PTSD was a very common disorder for retuning vets. This is because when you've been living in a war zone for months and years, its hard to go back to normal fast, they were still scared from the war. Many people saw family members and friends die in the war and it was hard for then to go back without those people also. For many people that were drafted had spent all their adult life in the war, so they new nothing other then the war. It was hard for them to adapt and get jobs and join in society because they weren't used to it. Overall the process of re-integration was a long and tough one.


The main purpose of the war was to end the spread of communism and protect the free world. The North Vietnam was invading southern Vietnam with its spread of communism. The U.S. got involved for 2 reasons. 1 because we are a democracy and we like our rights. We were against communism and and wanted to protect the free world. 2 was because South Vietnam was an U.S. ally and we protected them and got involved.


The war was right in the middle of the civl rights movement. Black soldiers didn't want to fight and defend a country who never gives them anything but hate. The racism took a break on the battle field where race didn't matter, what mattered was that they were your brother. The racism continued when they got home and in the sleeping areas with hazing and name calling. This wasn't fair or just at all and is very reasonable where they are coming from. Would you risk your life for a country full of people who don't like you?

Work cited



Created with images by mabusalah - "washington vietnam veterans war" • manhhai - "Viet Nam Photo UPI - An Loc Helicopter 1972" • 193584 - "army men military"

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