What is oppression? The word oppression can relate to a wide myriad of situations, as it did in the 1960's. Oppression is defined by Webster's Dictionary as the act of oppressing; arbitrary exercise of power or a feeling of being heavily weighed down in mind or body. In the 1960's it was not just one entity that experienced this need to obtain freedom, but it was many groups. According to Miller, "Something of value did happen in the sixties. New Voices were heard, new forms of beauty appeared. And most of the large questions raised by that moment of chaotic openness "political questions about the limits of freedom, and cultural questions, too, about the authority of the past and the anarchy of the new "are with us still- (Miller, 8). These "limits of freedom- explained by Miller are the oppressive standards that were evident in the 1960's by not only college students, but also by African-Americans, women, the people of Vietnam, and many other Americans who were exposed to technocracy, this era of oppression and its consequences is one of the major themes of this course. .
Technocracy triggered many of the social movements of the 1960's that were lead by young adults of this time. Their beliefs arose from their opposition toward the violence of the Vietnam War, which unionized them. They felt that they were being oppressed, because people's lives were in danger. The students were against society's intentions of maintaining a status quo, these individuals tried to break the barriers of society and develop their own minds to change themselves and the world around them from being exploited. According to Roszak, "When any system of politics devours the surrounding culture, we have totalitarianism, the attempt to bring the whole of life under authoritarian control. We are bitterly familiar with totalitarian politics the from of brutal regimes which achieve their integration by bludgeon and bayonet-(Roszak, 9).