Dominic Sandbrook

Busting the Myth

The 60s Unplugged: A Kaleidoscopic History of a Disorderly Decade

By

Macmillan 509pp £20 order from our bookshop

‘You don’t understand,’ an American history professor once said to me of the 1960s, wagging an avuncular finger. ‘You had to be there.’ Coming from somebody who had spent his life studying the nineteenth century, it seemed a particularly silly thing to say. But then, as Gerard DeGroot points out in a thoughtful introduction to his new book, there are many people for whom the myth of the Sixties has become ‘something sacred’, a totem of high-minded idealism regularly invoked as a reprimand to our own supposedly cynical age. ‘In no other period of history’, he writes, ‘has canon been allowed so freely to permeate analysis.’ 

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • 'I was dumbfounded by the view of the Berlin Wall from the eastern side. It seemed inconceivable that in under thre… ,
    • RT : Danger for ‘local’ staff, access in exchange for silence (and logos) - all sounds familiar in this fascinating look… ,
    • 'He has long been eclipsed by Vermeer, though his interiors are arguably more ambitious.' David Gelber on the Dutc… ,
    • 'The wicked are truly revolting and the rage is wholly understandable' on new thrillers by John Le… ,
    • In @aaciman's sequel to 'Call Me By Your Name', 'Erotic urgency has merged with middle age’s frugality of heart', s… ,
    • 'The repression of free speech in Uganda is common. Reporters Without Borders’ 2019 Press Freedom Index ranks Ugand… ,
    • RT : The Topeka School is out today! I reviewed it for and I'm psyched to see him talking at the Tate tonigh… ,