“Mad Men is self-evidently not about the 1960s, any more than Discipline and Punish is about the late 18th century. It is about us today and the contingencies through which we came to be so. One very smart way that Mad Men goes about this is to shift our habitual understanding of when a key historical break occurred.
We typically equate ‘the sixties’ with the late 1960s, with 1968 as their epitome. But this is only what the self-important baby boomers want everyone to believe, on the solipsistic basis that they insist on having changed the world, not their parents.
Mad Men overthrows this assumption, with a similar disdain as Tony Judt pours on the Western boomers who think throwing rocks in Paris was historically important. By focusing on the exit from the 1950s and the early sixties, it reminds us that the decade was about a shift from one model of middle class conformity to another, from one model of capitalism to another. The supposed abandonment of conformity and capitalism was a hippy delusion or, at most, a sideshow.”
Bold = me