The 1970s were a period of tumultuous change for the state of Vermont. Those years brought the culmination of long-reaching demographic and geographic changes and paired them with an influx of new ideas and new ways of living. The state saw its biggest population increase since the Revolutionary War – and many of the people who came had a deep impact on Vermont’s way of life.
For two years, the Vermont Historical Society has been collecting stories, objects, photographs, and other materials that tell the story of this decade, and now we are ready to share it. Our program will focus on placing Vermont in its national context. How did the social, political, and cultural movements in Vermont grow out of and compare to their national counterparts? What can we learn from history about how Vermont will continue to change in the future?
All activities will take place at the Vermont College of Fine Arts, Alumni Hall, 45 College St, Montpelier.
8:30 – Registration
9:00 – Breakfast & Business Meeting
10:00 am - Introduction - Jackie Calder
11:00 – Keynote: Edward Berkowitz
Keynote speaker Edward Berkowitz is a leading scholar of social policy and cultural history. His most recent monograph, The Other Welfare: Supplemental Security Income and U.S. Social Policy, appeared with Cornell University Press in 2013. He teaches courses in twentieth century American history, the movies and mass media in modern America, and the application of history to public policy.
12:00 - Lunch
1:00 – Back to the Land: Food, Communes, Migration, and Entrepreneurship
Session Chair: Kate Daloz
Kate Daloz, author of the recently published We Are As Gods: Back to the Land in the 1970s on the Quest for a New America, will discuss changes to food and agriculture, communal living, new businesses and organizations that grew out of the back to the land movement, and just why so many people were leaving urban areas to come to Vermont.
2:40 - Social Justice: Politics, Health, Education, Women's Rights, and Gay Rights
Session Chair: Holly Scott
Holly Scott’s new work, Younger Than That Now: The Politics of Age in the 1960s, has just been published as part of the University of Massachusetts Press series “Culture, Politics, and the Cold War.” She will use her expertise to frame a panel about social justice during the 1970s: politics, healthcare, education, women’s rights, and gay rights will all feature prominently.