“Worlds Destroyed before Your Eyes: American Children and the Threat of the Atom” Watch Video
Young Cold Warriors understood the conflict between the United States and the Soviet Union to mean their own homes, families, schools and friends might be destroyed in nuclear annihilation. From 1945 to 1963, Americans underwent periods of intense nuclear concern, followed by relative quiescence. Even in the quiet times, however, nuclear issues tinted the American consciousness. In popular culture and in classrooms, young people were beset with images of the atomic bomb and constantly reminded of the Cold War's dangers. Drawing on materials from the Oregon State University Libraries Special Collections and other sources, this presentation links the difficult topics of fallout and shelters with the lives of young Americans.