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Staring open-mouthed at 17 in my Buddy Holly glasses, chinstrap beard, espresso-stained insides, putrid Chuck Taylors and newsprint-smudged fingertips, I wondered what had happened to the world into which I was hoping to enter so well rehearsed.In post-1950s America, an average person’s concept of what might be the meaning of life was more likely than at any other time in history to draw on a wide range of source material.

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It started as a rallying image for the British anti-nuclear movement in the late '50s and went on to become one of the world's most instantly recognizable -- and widely adopted -- symbols. But did you know that the iconic peace sign was originally derived from the semaphore alphabet?

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