World City

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World City

World City
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World City Exhibit


After World War II, London was not as strong a city as it once was. Population was in decline and The British Empire had lost its colonies. Along with these factors the London youth and the multicultural community staged revolutions. These revolutions were brought on by the absorption of new values and claimed to have new rights. By the end of the 20th century London's identity was as diverse as its people.

Background or Origin of Article

The 1950's to Present day was an important time in London's history. More social revolutions and changes to society occurred in this period than any other period. This period helped to shape London to be the current world city it is today.

London Demographics

In 1961, 33% of Londoners were under the age of 25. These young citizens were better educated and had better living conditions than the generations before them. After the wars, education became the key to rebuilding London. The student population jumped from 269,000 in 1945 to 434,000 in 1953. With this brought a rise in the teacher population; it rose from 14,273 to 17,938 during the same time period. To accommodate the rise in both populations, 40 new schools were built.
The ethnic population of London also began to change in the 1960's. With the rise of Heathrow Airport, global travel became easier; Londoners went abroad and others came to London. With this travel, however, London's population continued to fall between 1961 and 1971. Immigration laws changed and asian immigrants who were expelled from Kenya and Uganda came to London as well as refugees from Vietnam and Bangladesh.
The 1991 census was the first time the report asked a question about ethnicity. It asked the taker to identify with one of 10 choices. The city did this to get a scope on how multicultural London was. To their surprise, the city was very diverse. Over the years, the censes added more ethnicity options to the census to gain more insight into the exact demographic. From 2001-2011, the number of minorities in London jumped 20%

Social Changes & Issues

'Straight' society's pace of change was not cutting it for young Londoners in the late 1960's. They felt it was time to do something about it: revolution. The student sit-ins at Hornsey College of art, mass protests of the Vietnam War, and calls for the legalization of cannabis were the revolution.
Another pressing issue for this generation was race and rights. London during the 1960's and 1970's called for the solving of prejudice and discrimination, but no one knew how to to it. The first step towards the passing of three laws. This was the first time racial discrimination was made illegal. People felt that these laws were too little, too late, and irrelevant. These laws were brought about by events such as the Notting Hill Riots and Black Panther demonstrations.
In the late 1970's, black Londoners still did not know their status. With the economic recession came tension and unemployment. Marchers took to the street to blame immigrants for England's hardships. The far right won the next election in a landslide victory. The left-wing responded with anti-racist campaigns. Bloody battles in the street ensued.
Homosexuality and Women's rights were also questioned during the late 1960's. People began to wonder if Britain actually equal rights to all. They also wondered if the laws should reflect mainstream values or protect minorities. People began to fight against social prejudice and after 30 years of debate, attitudes have shifted.




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