|This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia (view authors).|
Hippie (sometimes spelled "hippy") refers to a member of a subgroup of the counterculture that began in the United States during the early 1960s, becoming an established social group by 1965, and expanding to other countries before declining in the mid-1970s. Hippies, along with the New Left and the American Civil Rights Movement, are considered the three dissenting groups of the 1960s counterculture.
Originally, hippies were part of a youth movement composed mostly of white teenagers and young adults, between the ages of 15 and 25 years old, who inherited a tradition of cultural dissent from the Bohemians and the beatniks. Hippies rejected established institutions, criticized middle class values, opposed nuclear weapons, opposed the Vietnam War, embraced aspects of Eastern religions, championed sexual liberation, promoted the use of psychedelic drugs to expand one's consciousness, and created intentional communities. They used alternative arts, street theatre, folk music, and psychedelic rock as a part of their lifestyle, and as a way of expressing their feelings, their protests, and their vision of the world and life. Hippies opposed political and social orthodoxy, choosing a gentle and nondoctrinaire ideology that favored peace, love, and personal freedom, perhaps best epitomized by The Beatles' song "All You Need is Love". They perceived the dominant culture as a corrupt, monolithic entity that exercised undue power over their lives, calling this culture "The Establishment", "Big Brother", or "The Man".