1950s Music

Teenagers were considered the beat generation.

  • Teenagers were consisdered the beat genration because they had there own new music. This music was called rock and roll and it consisted of sexual undertones but it still had that influence from country, blues, jazz, and traditional Americann music. This was one of the starts of teenagers breaking out and becoming their own. This shows that teenagers loss their innocence because of the sexual undertones and it shows that they were emerging a new identity for themselves. Lastly this shows that during this time period they broke out of social conformity and it was the best thinig to do at this time.

1950s Fashion

The Teddy Boys and Teddy Girls were a big part in the fashion of the 1950s

  • The Teddy Boy was a type of style that the teenage boys back then wore a lot. This style consisted of the "drape" a long knee length wool jacket. Also they wore drainpipe trousers, brocade waistcoats and stiff shirts. Lastly they wore shoestring ties or bootlace slim jim ties with suede shoes to top it off. Now the Teddy Girls wore a close fitted black sweater and a calf lenght skirt. Also they wore toreador pants or circle skirts with low cut tops to show the body when they were dancing. the dances that they wore the circle skirts for were jiving and rock and roll. By having the teenagers wear this it meant that they los thier innocenece because the girls were showing more skin and the guys were not wearing the normal, suits. Lastly it showed that they were going against the social conformity and against their parents.

1950s Entertainment

The teenagers hung out at malt shops and other places like this too.

  • During this time period it was wrong if you hung out with your friends at certain places. Well teenagers in this time hung out at malt shops which we call now like Sonic or Umms. Also they hung out at drive in movies where people would "neck'. Necking was again not acceptable by parents or any adult at this time period. Also during this time some teenagers just hungout with their families and watched tv shows like I Love Lucy and The Ed Sullivan Show. Teenagers were suppose to go into the military or be a stay at home mom and have lots of kids when they got to teen years. But the teenagers in the 50s rebelled against this and it showed that they didnt want to follow in their parents footsteps. It showed that they wanted to make their own paths and choices in life. So by doing this they emerged from that identity they had been taught when they were younger.

1950s Dancing

In the 50s lots of dance shows were being played that had tenagers as the dancers on them.

  • During the 50s the shows that were being played were the American Bandstand and the Milt Grant Show. Now on these shows they had teenagers as dancers. Also these dance shows had black and white teens on them dancing together. So this was seen wrong because back then there was no interracial anything. By both races dancing together on a show it showed the world that these teenagers were going against conformity once again. Some of the dances that the teenagers didd on these shows were mostly swing based but here are a few of them: swing, jitterbug, Lindy, Boogie woogie and the Bop. By teens doing these dances it shoed that they were no longer innocent anymore and they were emerging their own new identity.

1950s Dating

Teenagers in the 50s started what we know as normal dating

  • In the 50s the normal date was taking someone to a bowling alley, coffee house, ice cream parlor or just to a movie. This was what all the eenagers did back then and is what we do now because of them. Dating to parents was not acceptable if you were dating someone of a different race because you were consisderd to stay with your own race. But back then some people did date out of their race and they were penalyzed for it by their family and their community. By teenagers in the 50s dating they began the concept of Dutch dating, which means that the cost is split between both people. Dutch dating in the %0s was consisdered the wrong thing to do because the boy should pay for everything. Also this type of dating was consisderd emarrasing to both the boy and the girl. By teenagers dating in the 50s it showed that they loss their innocence and was starting to grow up and go their own path.

Primary sources

Teddy Boy Style

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This is a photo showing what the teddy boys looked like back in the 50s. It also shows that what they're wearing is not going with socil conformity but going against it.Lastly this photo shows that tennage boys back then liked to dress to impress.As you can see all three of these teenage boys were wearing drapes and trousers which is what the Teddy Boy style consists of.

Teenage Dating

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This photo shows how teenage dating was back then at Danzingers Candy shop. it shows that during that time period teens had dates at parlors and they dated within their race. As you can see the waiter is probably taking their orders and you can tell they are a couple because the boys arm is around her. Normally at dates like this the boy always pays because if he does not it is very embarrasing to them both.

Works Cited


Cox, Erika. "Teenage Life in the 1950’s - Fifties - The 1950s." Fifties Sixties Fashion, TV, Movies, Hair, Food, Cars, 50's 60's Facts and History about 1950's and 1960's - Clip Art and Information. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Nov. 2011. <http://www.loti.com/fifties_history/Teenage>

Diggs, Barbara. "America’s First Teenagers: Youth in the Fifties." Fifties Sixties Fashion, TV, Movies, Hair, Food, Cars, 50's 60's Facts and History about 1950's and 1960's - Clip Art and Information. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Nov. 2011. <http://www.loti.com/teenagers_youth>

Powers, Richard. "Teen Dances of the 1950s." Social Dance at Stanford. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Nov. 2011. <http://socialdance.stanford.edu/syllabi>

Weston Thomas, Pauline. "1950s Teenager Fashion History - Teddy Boys, Fashion Idols 50's." Fashion History Costume Trends and Eras, Trends Victorians - Haute Couture. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Nov. 2011. http://www.fashion-era.com/1950s/1950s_4_teenagers_teddy

"1950s Fashion." Enjoy Your Style. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Nov. 2011.< http://www.enjoy-your-style.com/1950s-fashion.html>

"Chapel Hill Memories." Chapel Hill Memories. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 Nov. 2014. www.chapelhillmemories.com/cat/8/118

"Rock and Roll History." Salsa, tango, rock and roll, belly dance. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Nov. 2011. http://esto.es/rock/english/history.htm