When thinking about cities that have changed over time, there are several that come to mind, but perhaps none more fun and glamorous than London. It has the European flair that us Americans will never truly attain, but it is not as strict in its history as Paris or Milan. Instead, it is a city both proud of its heritage and forward-thinking. Here are some amazing pictures from past decades, and what was going on at that point in time in this amazing city!
Post-WWI (and next season’s setting for Downton Abbey, yes I’m obsessed), there was a feeling of liberation in the air, particularly for women. Dancing, fashion, makeup, and jazz music all became popular as wartime restrictions were lifted. The stuffy past that put such an emphasis on morals and rules had been destroyed by the war, but it led the way for London to become a modern city.
After two decades of prosperity and modern invention, the 1940’s brought another World War, and greater restrictions on London citizens. However, this time they were prepared and there were several ways for women to get involved, be it by nursing, morale-boosting, or taking on traditionally male roles.
Another war down, this time London chose to focus on its prospering youth culture, taking cues from American teenagers across the pond. Rock n’ Roll, juvenile delinquency, and a growing disparity between children and their parents characterized the decade that was otherwise economically prosperous.
Swingin’, Mod, and psychedelic are all words that can describe London in the Sixties. Fashion was huge, with people like Mary Quant and Twiggy taking over runways and publications all over the world. Meanwhile, in the music world, a little band called The Beatles was rising in popularity. Carnaby Street became the mecca of the cultural world, and it is still something that London holds onto with pride.
After the shining celebration of the ‘60s, the Seventies were somewhat of a letdown. The economy tanked, while Londoners started to become unsatisfied with their government. Protesters were seen at every occasion, and the city itself had lost some of the gleam of the previous decade. Not to worry, though, London has since bounced back and is continuously a place of amazing fashion, culture, and the 2012 Summer Olympics!
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