Make love, not war

Make love, not war


Make love not war is an anti-war slogan commonly associated with the American counterculture of the 1960s. It was used primarily by those who were opposed to the Vietnam War, but has been invoked in other anti-war contexts since.

Radical activists Penelope and Franklin Rosemont helped to popularize the phrase by printing thousands of "Make Love, Not War" buttons at the Solidarity Bookshop in Chicago, Illinois and distributing them at the Mother's Day Peace March in 1965. They were the first to print the slogan.[3]

In April of 1965, at a Vietnam demonstration in Eugene, Oregon, a senior at the University of Oregon pinned a handwritten phrase on her sweater that was the beginning of the popularity of this phrase. Those words read "Let's make love, not war". A picture of Diane Newell Meyer was printed in the Eugene Register-Guard and then a related article turned up in the New York Times on May 9, 1965.

Gershon Legman claimed to be the inventor of the phrase.[4]

In popular culture

  • The slogan was featured in Bob Marley's 1973 song "No More Trouble": "Make love and not war!".
  • The slogan was the inspiration for a book by David Allyn: Make Love, Not War: The Sexual Revolution: An Unfettered History.
  • In the movie 'Field of Dreams,' fictional character Terence Mann is credited with coining the phrase.
  • The character of 'Pop', in the futuristic Queen musical 'We Will Rock You', shouts "Make love, not war!" as he is brainwashed at the start of the show, which leads into 'Radio Ga Ga'.
  • American comedian George Carlin expressed admiration for the phrase, claiming that if he had originally thought of it, he would have retired. He went on to reveal his own variant, "Make fuck, not kill". He admitted that it wasn't as graceful, but then proudly declared "I'm not lookin' to retire either."
  • "Make Love, Not War" is the 1960s Modern Liberals' Wistful Hope for Fraternity.


  1. ^ Fattig, Paul. Medford Mail Tribune. Retrieved August 15, 2010. 
  2. ^ Levitas, Mitchel. New York Times. 
  3. ^ Rosemont, Penelope. Dreams and Everyday Life: A Sixties Notebook. Chicago: Charles H. Kerr, 2008:40-41.
  4. ^ Dudar, H., "Love and death (and schmutz): G. Legman's second thoughts," Village Voice, May 1, 1984, pp. 41-43.

See also