The above picture - Top Row (L to R): The Korean war, I love Lucy, popular TV show and Ivy Mike the atomic bomb.Centre Row (L to R): Eisenhower bids for presidency, Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, Rosa Parks (stood against segregation).Bottom Row (L to R): Suez War, Sputnik (first satellite), Fidel Castro,
In international matters, 1950 saw the start of the Korean War that lasted 3 years. America ended its occupation of Japan in 1951, democratic elections followed. The Suez Crisis, generally regarded as the collapse of the British Empire, in 1956. The European Common Market was established with the Treaty of Rome in 1957. The overthrow of Fulgencio Batista by Fidel Castro in 1959 resulted in the first communist government, not only in Cuba, but in whole western hemisphere. There was continued 'Cold War' friction between the two super-powers America and the Soviet Union. Large scale decolonization started in Africa in the 1950s. Libya became the first African country to gain independence. Nasser became President of Egypt and led Arab States into war with Israel.
During the 1950s the cinema became extremely popular following the deprivations of the Second World War. European directors like Frederico Fellini and Ingmar Bergman won major awards for their films. Notable European stars of the period included Brigitte Bardot and Sophia Loren.
Pop art took over from the more traditional art and became influential in advertising and propaganda.
Albert Schweitzer, Winston Churchill, Ernest Hemmingway and Boris Pasternak were notable Nobel Prize winners during the period.
Famous sportsmen from the time were;Roger Bannister (Athletics), Rocky Marciano (Boxing), Pele (Football) and Len Hutton (Cricket). The 1952 summer Olympics were held in Helsinki (Finland and the 1956 summer Olympics were held in Melbourne (Australia).
The early 1950s saw 'The Golden Age' of couture in Paris and London. The production of couture was important to the prestige and economy of both France and Britain. Whilst traditionally catering for wealthy private clients the couture houses also sought new markets. As the decade progressed they created perfumes, opened boutiques and licensed their designs to foreign manufacturers. By the late 1950s, the leading couture houses had become global brands.