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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Welcome to Paris in 1960. This was a Paris blackened by soot, before any scrubbing and beautifying had taken place. This was the capital of a country plunged up to the neck in the Algerian War. Parisians listened anxiously to the news in their transistor radios as they feared that the Algiers paratroopers would drop any day on Paris, topple de Gaulle and establish a Franco-style military regime. Yet 15 years after the horrors and deprivation of WW2, the mood was light, and a sense of affluence was pervading the entire society. Working classes were finally wealthy enough to buy their first cars. The time of the Parisian worker going to his factory on his bike was ending.

All the pictures here come from: http://izismile.com/2009/03/10/retro_pictures_of_french_cities_60_pics.html

For a more complete experience, you may want to listen to this song while looking at the pictures. It's called Nouvelle Vague ("New Wave"). It was the number one hit in France in 1960 when these pictures were taken. Young people were, as you can imagine, quite opposed to the idea of being sent to fight the war in Algeria, much like what would happen in the US with the Vietnam War a few years later.
[dailymotion]xd2ii_richard-anthony-nouvelle-vague[/dailymotion]









Colors! The Parisian girls of 1960 didn't eschew colors. Quite a contrast compared to today's Parisian girls who seem to wear only boring black and dark clothes.






That kind of old world style has now disappeared:






Rue de la Montagne Ste Geneviève, in the Latin Quarter, before the gentryfication:


"Darling, have you seen those new radio sets with pictures that they call television?" :D

^^Look at this blue! I want vivid colors like that in the streets of Paris again!

Central Paris before the gentryfication once again:


"All of Yesteryear's Montmartre", says the banner:
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
^^Not quite. 1960 was still quite conservative in France. The true revolution, sexual and otherwise, came only in 1967-1968.

What was quite noticeable about 1960 was the sudden change in French music and fashion among the young generation. Rock and roll suddenly entered France. The old glories such as Charles Trénet and Edith Piaf were replaced by younger singers influenced by the US. The song at the beginning of the thread is typical of that. So by 1960 the Americanization of the young generation was just starting to be quite visible, but it would take 7 to 8 more years before the young generation topples the old generation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
^^The central arrondissements look very similar. Everything else looks quite different.

Paris in 1960:


Picture taken from the same spot in 2006 (with a rendering of Phare Tower):
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
Not shot in 1960, but a great picture anyway. The Liberation of Paris on August 25, 1944, en couleur!



One can compare the soot on the Arc de Triomphe 16 years apart. Is it just me or did they scrub the Arc de Triomphe at least once between 1944 and 1960?

1960:
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
More pictures of Paris in 1960.



Three pictures of Montmartre, already very touristy back then (the true Montmartre died in the 1940s):






The Sorbonne 8 years before May 68:




The most central and historic part of Paris before the gentrification:


 

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Great pictures, I especially love the song "Nouvelle vague". I think it's rather positive that some aspects of Paris don't change, that's why we love it, if you look at the photos of New York (Manhattan) from the 1960s you will also see at least 60% of the same skyscrapers as today, but keeping the city core the way it is to appreciate its uniqueness and historic value seems to me very important.
 
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