Ken Burns Classroom


Contemporary United States (1968-present)

Cold War tensions persist and heighten until the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Civil Rights, and Women’s Rights, which have their roots in the 19th century, grow into movements that evolve the public conversation. The environmental movement, which began in the 20th century, is fueled by the 1962 publication of Rachel Carlson’s book, Silent Spring, and the establishment by Congress in 1970 of the Environmental Protection Agency under the presidency of Richard Nixon. The country faces new wars abroad and at home, new challenges. As the great Mark Twain said, “History doesn’t repeat itself but it often rhymes.”