Iconic fashion styles, a new wave of youth culture, and disco mania all occurred in the 1970s. In addition to these distinguishing features, the names given to infants also mirrored the prevailing ideology of that time. In homage to the funky ’70s, let’s revisit the most common baby names listed on birth certificates.
The Undisputed Victors: Michael and Jennifer
Baby names like Michael and Jennifer were popular in the ’70s. Michael topped the list for boys due to his enduring attractiveness, while Jennifer topped the list for girls because she personified the decade.
The 1970s were a time when classics were still very much in vogue. Names that have stood the test of time, such as Susan, Lisa, and Kimberly for girls and Christopher, James, and Robert for boys, continue to remain popular.
Names Derived from Natural Elements:
A wave of names derived from natural elements emerged in the 1970s, coinciding with a surge in awareness of the need to protect the environment. The choices were made with the beauty of nature in mind. Girls’ names included Dawn, Crystal, and Heather, while males’ names included Forrest, Cliff, and Dale.
The Impact of Television:
Baby names were not immune to the profound influence that television had on popular culture. Shows like “Happy Days,” “Charlie’s Angels,” and “The Brady Bunch” had an impact on naming trends, with names like Cindy, Angel, and Brady coming from them.
The 1970s were a decade of diverse music, and this diversity also permeated baby names. Names like Lennon, Bowie, and Elton for boys and Stevie, Janis, and Joni for females came from parents taking inspiration from their favorite musicians.
One trend that emerged in the 1970s was the use of names that did not indicate a gender. More and more parents were picking names that did not conform to traditional gender stereotypes for their children, such as Jordan, Taylor, and Morgan.
Unusual Spellings and Variations:
During this time, people started playing around with different versions of popular names. Naming trends in the 1970s included imaginative takes on traditional names like Jenifer and Khrystopher.
Like most fashion cycles, several names from the 1970s are making a comeback now. The classic names that stood out during this vibrant decade are reminiscent of the girls’ names Emma, Olivia, and Sophia and the boys’ names Noah, Liam, and Ethan.
Impacts from Society and Politics:
The baby name trend of the 1970s reflected the era’s political and social upheaval. As a result of the influence of political leaders on baby name trends, names like Jimmy Carter (after President Jimmy Carter) and Kennedy (after the powerful Kennedy family) became more common.
Embrace the Hippie Era:
The ideals of the 1960s and 1970s, such as a devotion to nonviolence, the environment, and free thought, persisted into the following decade. As more and more people adopted a counter-cultural philosophy, birth certificates began to include names like Sunshine, Rainbow, and River, which were popular among hippies.
The Allure of Astrology:
Romantic baby names were a part of the astrology craze of the 1970s. As more and more parents sought cosmic influences, celestial names like Luna, Star, and Orion gained popularity.
The names of cherished characters were among the many things that the 1970s blockbusters made an impression on popular culture. Popular names like Luke, which sprang from the movie “Star Wars,” and Rocky, which was based on the legendary film series, show how movies may impact naming patterns.
The 1970s were a decade of growing sensitivity to and understanding of different cultures. Alejandro, Juan, Aisha, and Mei were among of the names that parents started considering, demonstrating a more inclusive cultural acceptance.
Using a surname as a first name:
This practice became more common in the 1970s and has persisted to the present day. By being unisex and exemplifying this trend, Taylor, Jordan, and Morgan brought a little bit of modernity to long-established name norms.
In the 1970s, people still valued family traditions and legacies, even though there were a lot of new and unusual names. Honoring grandparents’ or parents’ names through the years keeps a name alive and helps youngsters feel connected to their family history.
Some 1970s artists are still huge hits today, but others have changed or gone completely unnoticed. Cultural influences and societal tastes change throughout time, and so does the landscape of baby names.
The creative, social, and cultural forces that molded the 1970s are reflected in the baby names of that decade. Every name reflects the lively and varied era in which it was given, whether it’s a classic choice, one inspired by nature, or a name based on a beloved TV show or musician. Remembering these names brings back fond memories of the amazing ’80s, with its disco music and polyester attire.