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Poster presented at the 2023 SWOSU Research and Scholarly Activity fair.

Rock was the popular new style of music in the 1950s and 1960s, but many major figures still received heavy criticism from traditionally minded listeners. Music critics often accused popular singers of faking their own voices and decried the chaotic sounds of rock. However, much of the criticism came from social concerns and not from the music itself. Listeners often deemed the lyrics and performances to be too inappropriate and Cold Warriors suspected that musicians held communist or un-American views. Overall, rock was viewed as detrimental to society. As a result, bands struggled with constant censorship or other forms of public backlash. The back and forth between musicians and their critics often reflected a Cold War mentality that prioritized conformity and led to modern morality politics.


SWOSU Research, Research fair, Rock music, Morality politics, Censorship