As we travel through the galaxy, the planets spend longer moving through the Signs the further away from the Earth we go. The Moon spends only a few days in a Sign, where the Sun spends a month, Jupiter a year, and Saturn four years. Now we get into the Generational Planets - Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto - so named because they spend so long in a Sign that they some to characterize an entire time period, and describe the traits of all the people born during that period of history. Your Uranus Sign placement is not individual to you and your personality, like the previous planets in this series were. Rather, this planet describes what everyone your age is like, forming a sort of group identity you all take part in.
Uranus is the first one we encounter, which spends 7 to 8 years in each Sign. Here is a generation's relationship to the wider society around it, and how it forms a unique identity among the masses by differentiating themselves from everyone else. Uranus is, by nature, erratic and spontaneous. It is the planet of lightning-bolt inspiration, sudden changes, chaos, and repressed, misunderstood emotions. This planet represents a generation’s rebelliousness, individuality, invention and reinvention. It is shocking and misunderstood, acting on high intellectual ideals and strong emotional impulses, characterizing the "rebellious teenager" archetype that scares adult society at large.
The unhealthy or immature Uranus, is a planet which believes that radically changing every aspect of their culture is the only way to liberate a society from its repressive norms. They identify with the poor, the "underdog", or with minority groups, to frame themselves as the oppressed or misunderstood victim, thereby inflating their ego with compassion-points that win them points with other people. The unpredictable, unsteady, unorthodox nature of Uranus starts a revolution, even a war, if it sees it as the only way to make important changes in society (and if everyone else is doing it too). But not everything that is conventional or established is inherently bad, and deserving of violent retribution.
The healthy or mature Uranus, alternatively, starts a revolution for a righteous cause. It is a planet that breaks down barriers in the name of equality. It is a force of positive, uplifting change, battling racism, sexism, poverty, ableism, transphobia, homophobia, and other injustices and oppressive power structures. And not just by standing up and shouting in the street, at a rally or a protest. But by patiently taking apart the walls people build in their emotional minds, and reforming the way people think and feel about the "others" in their neighbourhoods. Uranus, at its core, builds compassion and acceptance for all members of a society. It is humanist with high ideals and optimism for the future. It is freedom-loving, truth-seeking, and an example of the indomitable human spirit, and what we can accomplish together as a force for good.
When I was studying Uranus' transits through different time periods, I found two things that cycled in tune with this planet: Art Movements, and Subcultures. I theorized that Uranus influences start in the underground, on the outer fringes of society, with people who live outside of mainstream culture. Here, artists and intellectuals ahead of their time accurately reflect the raw emotion and uncut ideas felt by others in their society. They are weird and different, with a unique perspective that is enlightened but difficult to understand. They are also cool - so cool, that by the time Uranus finishes up in that Sign, the mainstream culture takes their art, music, politics, fashion, and philosophy, and makes it popular.
There are two symbols for Uranus. The most commonly used one is a circle connected to an H (♅), which stands for Hershal (the man who discovered the planet in 1781). The second, less commonly used one, is a combination of the alchemy symbols for iron and gold, which make platinum (⛢). The latter is the seed of creation with an arrow pointing upward, symbolizing how an idea, movement, creation, or person is driven upward to enlightenment or larger influence. The former can be stylized so that it is a cross connecting two crescents on either side of a circle. And that symbolizes dual (or several) human minds or spirits, connected to one another and grounded upon a larger body of self.
RULERSHIP AND EXALTATION
Uranus was discovered at the end of the 18th Century, and so has no traditional Rulership or Exaltation. Most astrologers agree that it should be Ruled by Aquarius and Exalted in Scorpio. I agree with the first bit. But I, personally, think Uranus should be Exalted in Gemini, for all these reasons:
Aquarius and Gemini share many traits in common. Both are Air Signs, so both live in their brains - learning, communicating, socializing, forming new relationships, and letting their curiosity lead their minds all over the map in search of new, interesting, exciting things to think about. Both are complex Signs, with Gemini being two things at once, and Aquarius being many different things all at the same time. Both are dramatic and emotional, but also detached and purely rational. Both crave closeness and relationships as much as they do freedom and independance. They are loyal in their heads and their hearts, but also crave a variety of relationships; intimate, sexual, platonic, or otherwise. Both are highly social, with many associates and acquaintances but few very close friends. They are crazy, changeable, wild, and unpredictable, but steady in their conviction that the advancement of science, technology, and the arts is what will save humanity - all things purely Uranus, in all its many shapes and forms.
This would make Uranus in Detriment in Leo and in Fall in Sagittarius. These Fire Signs, while warm and optimistic, are inherently self-centered. Not that this is inherently a bad thing - but it does not jive well with Uranus' desire to gather together as a group of individuals in the name of equality for all. Leo is attention-seeking, wanting to be seen as special and valued above the rest. They set themselves center-stage and demand to be seen, sulking in the corner if they are told they are just as good as everyone else. Sagittarius is freedom and truth-seeking too, and just as erratic and unpredictable. But Sagittarius is purely independent, and not a Sign who changes to become want others want them to be. Both of these Signs should look to their Airy counterparts and learn to put themselves aside for the greater good, and to conform to become a part of a greater cause.
URANUS THROUGH THE SIGNS
URANUS IN ARIES (1927-1935, and 2010-2019) is an example of how two generations of people alive at the same time can have Uranus in the same sign. The first time period saw major economic shifts in the late 20s and early 30s as the stock market crashed and many people were out of work. Canadians and Americans only took home half as many earnings per year as they did before, which was devastating to singles and families alike. The Great Depression coupled with the Dust Bowl (which led to food shortages and little work in the countryside), meant citizens were left with fewer and fewer options as time went on. Compared to the latter time period, or modern day, it is hard to believe that babies born now could face anything like what their great-grandparents did in the Dirty Thirties. But these children are growing up in the aftermath of the World Financial Crisis, and they are absorbing similar messages from society as older folks did.
In both time periods, we see how society is inspired by independence. Like the ram charging through walls, people ran after freedom and a self-directed life. When governments, banks, and institutions fail to shelter citizens from the economic storms, a lot of trust is lost. They are forced to think and act independently in order to survive. People organize protests and demande unionization so they could gain some autonomy against their big-wig bosses. During this transit people want(ed) to be in charge of themselves, to live and love without any restrictions put on them. Nobody could lead them better than themselves, it was thought. The less power anybody had over them, the better.
These Aries-like themes can be seen in major art movements of the time, as creative people were inspired by the landscapes around them. The former time period saw the rise of both Art Deco and Regionalism, two styles that compared high hopes with angry realism. Art Deco was a geometric, brightly coloured style heavily influenced by the industrial technology of the times. With long, piled, rectangular shapes and streamlined figures, it represented glamour, luxury, and the hopeful future of society and technological progress. However, with all this affluent optimism there was also Regionalism, which glorified the former years of the American countryside. Artists, upset over The Great Depression and their crumbling society, longed for the simple freedoms of rural living. This style had an almost pastoral feel to it, as the artists felt an overwhelming need to escape from their dire circumstances into an idolized heartland. Now that we find ourselves in a modern time period where we expect to see similar themes in our present art movement. But without some distance it is difficult to say what will stand out the most.
Another place to look and see the influence of Uranus in Aries is the fringes of society, where subcultures emerge. In the former transit, we encountered the lowly Hobo. Hobos saw a spike in popularity as the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl sent thousands of young men out of work. With few options, those without families rode on trains and walked on dirt roads through the countryside, carrying what little they had with them. They were poor, but they were free. And they chose to live their life like a Roma, traveling from place to place without any plans for their survival. They created a language of symbols all their own to communicate with one another. And in their Ethical Code, their #1 rule is listed as “Decide your own life; do not let another person run or rule you.”
While nobody is able to predict how this generation being born now will strive to change the world, we can see past cycles and guess based on what we know. Which subcultures being developed now will come to exemplify this time period? Which artists will have their names remembered? Which innovations, technologies, and scientific discoveries will forever change society, for better and for worse? We do not know yet. But if this generation is anything like the last, they will look to the future with challenge and rebellion. They are individuals in every sense of the word, and they will expect to be given the independence they deserve.
URANUS IN TAURUS (1934-1942, and 2018-2026) was last seen during the Great Depression and the onset of World War II. Hard economic times hit both city and country folk, sparing only a few of the very wealthy. In cities people were slightly better off because they had more resources at hand. In the country, however, there was little work, thanks to the Dust Bowl that whipped the prairies into a dry, dusty wasteland. Rural farmers were forced to sell their land for what little they could (or abandon it altogether) and migrate with their families to where food, supplies, and money could be found. Of the jobs there were, most were found in the cities. And those in the biggest cities had the greatest chance of surviving.
People had been moving from the country to the city for as long as there have been the two. States like New York and California experienced a huge boom in population and expansion in the 20s when the government spent huge amounts of tax revenue building roads and buildings. This trend continued during this time period as well, but it was due to the desperate need for work that could be found nowhere else. The influx of people moving in from the south and east is what helped country music become so popular, as farmers brought with them their own music, customs, beliefs and values when they moved. They shared their idolized pictures of the countryside when it was flourishing, their pastoral views of their homeland. And in turn, mainstream American culture (in particular) began to integrate this down-home, romanticized image of life on the farm.
Both Regionalism and American Scene Painting were styles that depicted natural, rural landscapes in an idealized way, much like pastoral poetry captures nature in a warm, affectionate light. Each of them were political in their own way, expressing the desire to return to “simpler” times in the American heartland. Small towns and farmlands played a large role in this style.
Meanwhile, people from Oklahoma, Arkansas, Texas, and other states in the mid-west were migrating west from their homeland into California. Collectively called "Okies", they were initially typecast as stupid hillbillies with a strong conservative bent. Made up of mostly poor white and mixed race farmers from the south, they slipped into the lower class and took menial jobs in dire conditions. The term “Okie” was at first an insult, implying that the person was of a lesser class and probably an idiot. But as time passed and their influence grew, they began to wear their title with pride. They had the courage to leave their home, come to a new one, and work where nobody else would. And they were among those most influential in bargaining worker’s rights and fighting for better living conditions overall. The image of the Okie became almost cool, as they stood as a hard-working, all-American group that supported their own. Nowadays this term is still worn with pride by those who live in the state, or whose families were the ones that initially immigrated in the Dirty Thirties.
The Uranus in Taurus generation cares very much about preserving tradition, going insofar as rebelling against new, unfamiliar things in favour of what they know. You carry your past with you and insist on the importance of remembering where you came from and what your family has done to get you there. You grew up in hard times, which made you proud and patriotic of your homeland. But during times of economic downfall, this can develop into facist or nationalistic ideas and a romanticism of the "good old days", which we saw rise up during this past transit and again in the modern day. You believe the world would be better if everybody adopted the same down-home values as you, and possessed as admirable a work ethic as others your age. As a generation, you care deeply about material security and you go to great lengths to work hard and earn a living. You are right to wish to share your pride and treasured stories with the world - but do not let your dogmatic views become extreme, or else the unsightly parts of the 30s and 40s may come back to bite us all.
URANUS IN GEMINI (1941-1949) is in its Exalted position. From the early years of WWII to its end and the very beginning of the Cold War, Uranus was moving through the sign of Gemini. When you were born, western society was in the throws (or recent aftermath) of the largest and most devastating war in modern history. Like the sign of Gemini, the world was split into two twins – the Axis and the Allies – and greater influences were placed on technological advances in communication and travel than ever before.
Most young white men were drafted into the army, navy, and air forces. But the draft left major industries without a viable workforce, and so many companies and government offices rewrote their recruitment qualifications to allow women and people of colour to be hired. As more diverse groups began living and working together in pursuit of a common goal, barriers that existed between race, gender, and nationality began to rumble and quake a little bit at a time. Once the war was over, returning men who had seen the world and all it held were no longer content to live quietly on family farms. Women knew what it was like to live and work on their own, earning and spending their own money and not their husband’s. And although racism was still rampant in everyday life, people of colour began to emphasize their own Civil Rights issues more than ever before.
In the art world, Social Realism was one of the more groundbreaking art movements at the time. Once the war was over and the horrors of the Holocaust were revealed, Social Realism took off in Europe. But governments who spewed propaganda about the war did not want the public to turn an eye to the realities of the war. In America, Abstract Expressionism became the prominent style in the art world. There are allegations that the CIA continued to fund abstract artists in order to draw attention away from art that emphasised the traumatic state of society at the time. But we may never know for sure.
Even more than the art movements, the dominant subcultures at the time emphasized some clear Gemini-like ideologies. Hipsters transcended the culture’s views by attending (mostly black) jazz and blues clubs, and having casual sex on the side, outside of marriage. A defining feature of the Hipster was their atypical language; their slang was strange, but it jived well with other musicians. Rising above morality, emotions, bureaucracy and affiliations, they jumped from girl to girl, or boy to boy. Highly intellectual, and yet unconcerned with matters of politics or society, they rebelled with slang, smoke, and good times. In their language a "square" was somebody who was traditional, conservative, narrow-minded, and who sought security above everything else. They thought they were better than that, having reached a higher level of consciousness than their mainstream counterparts.
Uranus in Gemini means you were born during a time of great change and conflict, both inside and out. As a generation, you seek to be rebellious in your language, learning, and the way you communicate information. It is a way for you to express your intellectualism, and the way that you see which barriers are constructed and which are natural in society. As young people in the 60s and 70s you became increasingly political in your influence, as seen by the growing Democratic polls and counterculture movements that arose at that time. Having grown up during a time where, for a fleeting moment, race and gender roles changed dramatically, you saw how equality between the two sides was very possible. Whether you had a personal hand in forwarding social justice issues or growing communication technology, you belong to the generation that had an early influence on the changes in speech and learning. And you continue to be just as witty and lively as ever!
URANUS IN CANCER (1948-1956) saw the end of WWII and, in the West, the economic uptick that came afterward. Western society was still reeling from the horrors of war; although the Allies won against the Axis and emerged economically ahead, citizens were left visibly shaken by what their countrymen had been through. With communism spreading and the Cold War just beginning, consumerism was linked to support for capitalism and a healthy economy. Coupled with the looming threat of McCarthyism, citizens were conditioned to behave and believe what they had to in order to seem as “American” as possible.
Our culture changed during this time to propagate wholesome, down-home, time-honoured values and marry them with a love of material goods. Patriotism (poured heavily on society by the war effort) was used as a tool to make people buy or believe anything, as one’s love for their country was not something they could question or take lightly. But although Uranus in Cancer symbolized a period where mainstream society was made to take on the sign’s values of home, family, and tradition, it also shows us that there were individuals that questioned those teachings.
Abstract Expressionism placed just as much importance on the creation of art as it did the artwork itself. The emotional state of the artist was an integral part of the piece, rather than the inspiration for it. In the post-war era the public had many mixed feelings about the world around them, having won a horrible war and watched their country move on to economic prosperity despite thousands of wounded and deceased members of their family. This style of artwork reflected that inner conflict and all the bitterness and relief that came with it.
The Beat Generation was comprised of disparaging young people who possessed admirable creative talent and a sour taste for society. Famous for donning black sweaters and writing spoken word poetry, they smoked in underground clubs and nodded along to one other’s cynicism. The movement defied the period’s attitudes towards “unusual” relationships, drugs, and popular politics. They were bitter about WWII, the emergence of the Cold War, and all the government paranoia that kept citizens in check. But they were not the kinds of people to scream and fight and demand change be made. (Such outright defiance was not practical at a time where simply being suspected of having communist leanings was enough to get you arrested.) Instead, they quietly, but persistently, gathered together and wrote about their broken homes and distrust of all authority. Beatniks may have been satirized as bongo-playing weirdos, but they were brave enough to actively rebel against society at a time when most people were too scared to think differently.
As a member of the generation born in this time period, you soaked up all these messages from a very early age. On one hand you took in mainstream society’s lessons about staying loyal to your home, family, and country. You were told to work hard and gain material security not only for your benefit, but for the economy as well. After all, capitalism was safe and free, while communism enslaved. On the other hand, however, you remain cynical about what the government tells you and long to rebel against your traditional upbringing and explore the realms of sex and drug culture (most likely in the 1960s-70s). Whatever parts of Uranus in Cancer you took into yourself, you share those traits with others close in age to you. You are all somewhat traditional and yet seek to quietly rebel, remaining loyal to your family yet distrusting authority.
URANUS IN LEO (1955-1962) is in its Detriment position. It was during this time that American and Canadian households saw the rapid growth of the entertainment industry and consumer products, as citizens has excess money and time to spend on luxuries. Television took off, and in just ten years (1948-58) the percentage of homes with a TV grew 83%, making it the fastest spreading household technology in history. This had profound effects on our culture at the time, as information, images, and video had never been so readily available across such a wide demographic before.
The influx of shows, movies, and commercials being broadcast directly into our homes changed society in very drastic ways. Suddenly there was a new medium that was stimulating and fun, with cartoons for children and family programming like I Love Lucy and Leave It To Beaver. The entertainment industry had already been around for quite some time, but now pop culture icons were household names. Actors, actresses, musicians, directors, artists, hosts, and the like were watched nightly by the whole western world, and their fame spread rapidly because of it.
Uranus in Leo coincided with the invention of new technologies that made creative talents famous. But if you really want to see where Uranus had the most profound influence you need to look out to the fringes of society where the artists and subcultures lie. In the art world we saw the emergence of Pop Art with painters depicting famous figures in brightly coloured, comic book style canvases. And in the young, rebellious parts of society there arose a subculture of Greasers, whose image had a back-and-forth flow of inspiration with Hollywood icons Elvis Presley, James Dean, and Marlon Brando.
Pop Art was the most obviously Leo-like way to illustrate how society felt about the sudden popularization of famous names and commercial products. Andy Warhol started his famous pictures of soup cans and celebrities, while Roy Lichtenstein painted his comic-book style pictures of dramatically emotional characters. This style of art had bold colours, clean, simple lines, and a bubbly, cartoonish feel to it. Most of the subject matter was advertising, celebrities, magazines, television, movies, and comic books. Pop Art is about popular culture, and so inspiration came from ordinary, everyday objects and media. The most prominent messages were about the materialism of modern society. Art served as a humorous, sometimes ironic commentary – glamorizing mundane objects, as advertisers did when they were trying to sell things.
Centered around Rock n’ Roll music (which was obscene and controversial at the time when it first came out), the Greaser subculture emerged in lower-income areas around the East Coast. Looking the part was important, and most Greasers took excess care to wear the right clothes and style themselves correctly. Leather jackets, motorcycles, and Mercury Cruisers became associated with the subculture after many youths took part in street racing and rioting behaviour. This became even more prevalent as Hollywood portrayed them as rebels without a cause, reinforcing the stereotype. Deviancy of all kinds was common amongst Greasers, who saw themselves as outlaws too cool to obey the rules. They took on a role and played it well, much like the icons and celebrities they modeled after.
When you were a child you grew up under these influences, which were an intrinsic part of the culture you were raised in. As a generation you take all these rebellious, inventive, innovative characteristics of Uranus and you apply them to your creativity and your individual desire for love and attention. What everybody needs is to have fun, relax, and indulge in what makes them happy! When you were a child society was changing as more and more celebrities were brought into your home and idolized. And even as adults, you seek to reinvent society in much the same way. You can think of new ways to cast the spotlight, both on yourself and others. And you can invent new sources of pleasure and desire. You all possess a childlike creativity, both cheeky and sweet. Inspired by fame and fortune, you can discover the greatest delights the world has to offer.
URANUS IN VIRGO (1961-1969) defined a time period that is remembered the most for its revolutionary scientific achievements and successful social justice movements. But mainstream society in the western world was actually very different than the counter-culture movements that we know and love today. The image we have today of daily life back then sharply contrasts the reality of how it was. As said by Elise Francis Miller in A Time to Cast Away Stones, “...I began pulling out old pictures and yearbooks ... Suddenly there we were, thousands of trim-haired, neatly-dressed, conservative-looking youngsters, with perky, forced smiles, encased in identical inch by inch-and-a-quarter boxes for our children to snicker at. Only they did not snicker. ‘Mom, this isn’t the 60s, is it?’”
The reason that the New Left, Civil Right Movements, and Hippie subcultures were so revolutionary is because society was actually quite conservative at the time. Households held “traditional Christian values” in high regard. Families taught their children to obtain a high work ethic, to be loyal to the morals they were brought up with, and to go on to get a job, a house in the suburbs, and a family. Women were to stay at home while men worked. Society was rigidly structured so as not to allow children (or any citizens, really) to see sex, drugs, or atypical family structures in a positive light. This cultural repression of natural human desires for pleasure and fun showed up in the subcultures and countercultures of the time, much like repressed emotions surge in other areas of life. In the art world we saw Virgo’s influence in the rise of Realism, which sought to paint pictures in exacting detail to reality. And we saw it in the Hippies that taught the values of peace, love, and the importance of the natural world.
Both Pop Art and Photo Realism dominated the art world at the time. These two styles were a response to the overwhelming emergence of photography in media, which diverted from the hand-painted ads familiar to the 40s and 50s. Pop Art was a cartoonish, ironic commentary on popular culture, while Photo Realism was an attempt to paint a photograph. Super Realism was a step further, where artists painted very difficult, highly meticulous images of scenery exactly as seen in reality. These artists painted wet surfaces, metallic or reflective objects, and highly ornate landscapes with needle-like precision. They could use a detailed coloured photograph for reference, so a painting that took weeks could be done without the scenery changing. This style demanded plenty of patience and an eye for intricate details, as well as obvious skill and talent.
While the art world saw the more stereotypical influence of Uranus in Virgo, society saw what they were repressing spring to life in rebellious youth culture. In an attempt to break away from the social programming brought on by “The Man”, young people rebelled against every value there was at the time. They were trying to find their own natural, authentic self and in the process they experimented with hallucinogenic drugs, smoking pot, communal living, free love, and different styles of music. They were children of the earth, born from it and living with it in the wild spaces between San Francisco and Manhattan. Their approach to everything was reminiscent of a bygone era of natural remedies and earthy spirituality, which aimed to treat the soul with the body and not separately. A strict, censored culture on the outside was hiding these mystical children under their disgust and fear; labeled as dirty and lazy – the worst thing a group of people could possibly be (in the eyes of a Virgo).
You and others in your age group were born during this era and grew up with your ears wide to its influence. Uranus in Virgo in your chart means that you absorbed all these messages about the importance of tradition, work ethic, and a strict moral code that protected you from being exposed to sex or sympathy for the plight of the division in society. But you also looked up to those artists and Hippies on the left that rebelled and demanded their creative spirits should be in tune with the earth and sky. Your generation is therefore caught between familiar Virgo divisions: your pride in remaining traditional and chaste, and your need to explore your own earthly desires. In turn, you are innovative in both work and health, wanting to explore more than one career and try all-natural medicines. Able to balance between both sides of yourself, you gladly accept both your culture’s standards of beauty and behaviour as well as your own ideas on living a full life.
URANUS IN LIBRA (1968-1975) was a time where the media shifted away from morally-superior, clean-cut shows and stories and began to include more reality in their characters. While there were revolutionary ideas circulating amongst young people in the 1960s about race, religion, drugs, sex, politics, and gender, it took until this time period for audiences to get comfortable talking about them. A great example is the series “All in the Family”, which aired in 1971. The characters balanced the show between traditional and modern ethics while honestly portraying things like racial division in America at the time.
Citizens – having been exposed to these radical ideas for a number of years already – were suddenly more aware of the truth about how they lived and affected each other. They were eager to participate in social justice movements and make their political messages known. In the art world this time period saw the rise of highly intellectual styles like Conceptual Art and Minimalism. Both of these styles sought to remove excess ornamentation to get to the most basic idea behind the piece, much like Libra tries to boil ideas down to get to the most universally fitting rules. Meanwhile, when you look at subcultures that sprang up in this time, both Yippies and Glam Rockers demonstrate alternative parts of the Libra sign. Yippies were young, cynical, and politically-savvy while Glam Rockers were fashionable and androgynous through integrating opposing feminine and masculine styles together.
In Conceptual Art the idea behind the artwork is just as important as the artwork itself. Formally, artists were to depict or create material objects, and the focus of the piece was the thing itself. However, in this radical style it is the concept, the idea behind the piece, not the words, lines, images, or even emotions. This style questioned the very essence of what art was, examining itself as well as the artist. Similar to this was Minimalism, an art movement characterized by the complete lack of defining details. This may include simple, straight lines and common shapes. It removed all non-essential elements and distilled the artwork down to its most basic components. All ornate elements were missing, leaving only the form and the function and nothing else. Both these art styles were revolutionary at the time because you had to look and think about what the piece really was, rather than feeling and admiring it from afar.
The Youth International Party focused on their ideas as well, but theirs were centered more around political and social commentary. Through satire, pranks, street performances, and public demonstrations, they routinely poked fun at corporations and governments alike. They were a left-wing, anti-authority, offshoot of the Hippie subculture that wanted to promote their liberal views and establish a communal society. But at the same time there was the Glam Rocker subculture, which was arguably bigger and more influential. Armed with over-the-top theatrics, a fashion that employed tight, glittery, sexy outfits, and a revolutionary rock sound, Glam Rockers dominated the beginning of the 1970s music scene. As the name implies, it was a glamorous, fabulous subculture that intentionally crossed genders on various occasions. The style may have been short-lived and without any particular message, but it united a few artists for a short time.
With Uranus in Libra, you are inspired to revolt by the political situations around you causing imbalance and inequality. Whether it is related to gender, race, size, ability, or anything else, you believe all people should be treated kindly. You abhor injustices, rude behaviour, corruption, ugliness, unfairness, and disharmony, and so you feel compelled to make everything symmetrical and beautiful and right again. As a generation, you are rebellious against your government and the large corporations running your life. Things need to change, and you live to see it.
URANUS IN SCORPIO (1974-1981) means that your generation's rebellion is deeply personal, focusing on bringing those darkest parts of humanity to the surface for everyone to look at and accept in themselves. These themes were seen in the time period that Uranus was in Scorpio, where media evolved from social-justice oriented storylines to focusing on the taboo parts of our culture. The writing became noticeably more cynical, reflecting the American public’s feelings on the politics at the time. Various television series began including racial division, sex, death, abortion, and religious elements in their plotlines.
The art world saw the rise of Neo-expressionism, which returned to depicting recognizable objects but in an abstract way. Anger and despair were commonly seen in how faces were distorted into ghoulish figures. Many of these works, although brightly coloured, depicted the darker emotionalism of the artist. But the desire to feel and express one’s raw passions were not limited to the art world. This time period saw the rise of one particularly aggressive, animalistic subculture - Punk.
Neo-Expressionism artwork was realistic but aggressively distorted, portraying some of the rougher emotional aspects in addressing the violence of modern history. War served as the inspiration for the Neo-Expressionist art movement, which centered on how the artist felt about the physical and social world around them. Myth, fiction, and history also played a role. Some people claimed it was a return to invoking imagination and emotion within the viewer. Others argued that it was pandering to political movements. Citizens were still reeling from the Civil Rights Movement and the Vietnam War. People were feeling a lot of extreme sadness, confusion, anger, and bitterness about society and their lives at large, and just as the economy was starting to take a dive.
This is where Punk gained traction. Inspired by anti-establishment lyrics and the rough voices screaming aggressively into the microphone, teens and young people adopted their messages into their own personal philosophy. They shaved their hair into mohawks and dyed it bright colours to emulate tribal communities. They adorned themselves with piercings and tattoos and decorated their clothing with chains, studs, and other metallic accessories. The ideologies of the punk movement were to tear down artificial structures in society and give that power back to themselves. They praised authenticity and sought to be who they were at any cost, dressing and behaving in the rawest, most natural way possible.
You were born during this time period, and so the imprint of Uranus in Scorpio is felt by you and others close in age to you. People were inspired to create and destroy by their extreme emotions. And you, in turn, will seek to reform the world in much the same way. In our culture right now it is not “right” to feel and express one’s self in every way possible, as our current society deems any kind of negative emotion “inappropriate”. But you know that these structures need to fall if humanity is to progress to a point where we can comfortably accept our own anger, sexuality, and fears of death. Your generation is innovative because it is inspired by the darker parts of humanity and seeks to bring it into the light. The revolution you bestow is that all darkness and light must be united and loved together. These things are natural. Scary, yes, but not to be feared.
URANUS IN SAGITTARIUS (1981-1988) is in its Fall position. You were born in the 1980s, when globalization and commercialization were becoming a more prominent part of everyday life. Happy, funny sitcoms returned in popularity after a few decades of social-justice oriented programming, as though the public unanimously wanted to just relax and have fun. The innovative ideas that took hold in this time period all centered around pleasure and indulgence. But one negative side effect is that obesity rates spiked suddenly in time with wage stagnation, less physical activity, and the industrial-processing of food products. On a positive note, however, this era saw the introduction of some of the most groundbreaking and iconic music in the world, such as pop, hip-hop, rap, and most forms of rock music.
Appropriation was found in both art and music, where artists took samples and put them together to make something new. You can see Uranus in Sagittarius here in the way that it draws from several ideas at once and puts them together into a single personal philosophy. But perhaps most prominent were art styles that were political in nature, reflecting that side of Sagittarius as well.
In the art world there were several styles that were popularized, if only briefly, during the 1980s. Neo-expressionism remained popular in North America while Transavantgarde took hold of Europe. Both styles aimed to express the raw emotional state of recognizable figures like the human body, but the second style incorporated noticeably more joy into its work. Street art, like Graffiti, became popular in the budding hip-hop scene in large inner-cities. The colours were bright and the lettering abstract, and sometimes they even contained political messages. This style caught on quickly as members of society could communicate short, simple tags to one another through racially or financially divided areas. Some were powerful, others sarcastic, and others still were for the thrill of sneaking out and creating something outside. It was illegal and reckless, but Uranus in Sagittarius is rebellious in favour of fun and adventure.
Metalheads also embody this planet in this Sign, but in a much different way. What brought these people together was a love of hard, fast music played at high speeds over ridiculously loud speakers. They loved the intensity of the sound, of thrashing their heads to the drilling pace of guitar and booming bass of drums. Despite their feelings of alienation, of being an outsider, they came together to scream the same lyrics and raise their fists in unison. Their rebellion was in being true to themselves. They praised one another’s authenticity, as mainstream pop music had sold out to the larger corporations that increasingly dominated every aspect of their life. It is no coincidence that the face of that rebellion was uncontrollable, hyper-sexual, dangerous wild man. The core of the Metalhead persona is the equine half of the centaur: the untamed spirit, uninhibited by society’s rules and uncaring for their ideals of what people “should” and “should not” act like.
As a member of this generation, the materialistic, pleasure-loving culture around you taught you to indulge in favour of economic growth. But you also carry a rebellious spirit that pulls you to be reckless as a political statement. This generation is innovative when it comes to personal philosophy and the nature of mankind, and can inspire others with their enlightened points of view that balance the altruistic with the animalistic. More than any other generation, yours will offer some of the truest insights into human nature. And you will incorporate your love of life into the world around you, allowing both yourself and your fellow kin to do as they please with no harsh judgement.
URANUS IN CAPRICORN (1988-1996) was a time when the western world was rapidly commercializing every commodity it could. Television saw the introduction of hundreds of new channels. Home video game consoles became increasingly popular. Home computers rose to popularity! As formerly-communist powers began to shake down their boundaries, more and more companies moved their production lines overseas, where labour was cheaper. And as a result, most jobs in western nations became minimum-wage, customer-service jobs, which revolutionised the job market in a not-so welcome way.
Culturally, we see Uranus in Capricorn’s influence beginning on the edges of society and working their way in. These movements became ironic commentaries on selling out for fame and fortune, of sacrificing integrity and creativity for a chance at wealth. The soul of creation was gone, taken by corporations and resold to the masses in less distinguished packaging. The art world became fixated on turning a profit, and major art movements of the time showed that. Unlike other forms of artwork, this is created mostly for entertainment and specifically to be bought and sold as a commodity. Grunge and Goth styles were popularized thanks to their pessimism, apathy, emotional complexity, and their reluctance to reform their individuality to fit in. By satirizing other genres (like glam rock) they added a sarcastic twist of the knife to consumer culture.
Performance Art was popularized because there were various opportunities to make money in the exploding entertainment industry. Where previous art movements were spurred by social commentary and the artist’s emotions, this was fueled by profit margins and the opening of the Eastern Bloc. This style can include dancing, acting, movies, figure skating, gymnastics, music, and so on, but can also include performance poetry and public demonstrations. This style of art has always been around in various forms and styles throughout history. But as communism fell, technology developed, and the masses were given more freedom in what they could be exposed to, this style became predominantly more commercialized. No longer were artists restricted to just the audiences in front of them or in their native land. Now information could travel around the world and expose artists to a global audience. And it did, much to the delight of international corporate sponsorship.
Grunge as a music style became popular, combining punk and heavy metal into a single dirty, angry genre of its own. Teens wore thrift-shop flannel shirts and grew their hair to an awkward length, screaming cynical lyrics and becoming disillusioned with the world. They were not tortured rebels, but indifferent individuals. Hopeless about their futures in a business-oriented climate that did not care about them, they settled for laziness and a bitter sense of humour. Goth was similar, but shared some differences. It was more creative, more romantic, but it had its own dark thoughts. With black clothes, chains, and metallic accessories, these teens scared any adults they passed by. Obsessed with all the morbid details of life, they glorified the underbelly of human society and enveloped pain, death, and sex. It was hard to fit into mainstream society with crazy haircuts and pointed makeup, but that did not matter much to them at the time.
You were born in this time period, and so you have Uranus in Capricorn. Should you choose to assimilate into corporate culture, you will bring innovative ideas with you to any business. Your sudden flashes of inspiration can be sparked by your desire to make money, and as a generation you are capable of coming up with new business ideas. While you are ambitious and willing to work to succeed, you will expect your work environment to be free and equal. You will not gawk at new or unusual ideas. However, you do not need to become a part of mainstream society to be a success in what you choose to do. You do not have to go to university, start a career, buy a house, and start a family to live a rich life. You have a million ideas surrounding your professional life, and you will not lose your individuality to fit in with our commercialized consumer culture.
URANUS IN AQUARIUS (1912-1920, and 1995-2003) is in its Ruled position. Although these two generations were born at opposite ends of the 20th Century, they both carry Uranus in Aquarius in their collective charts and so retain the qualities of that sign. Both periods saw the sudden introduction of advanced technology and the influx of ideas on a shared and equal society. Those born in the former time period spent their early years in the chaos of WWI, which saw such great leaps in technology that all tactics had to be reinvented to adapt to them. First Wave Feminism saw women gain some legal rights equal to men. And Socialism saw its early roots in the October Revolutions taking place in Russia. The second generation was born when the internet was popularized through the new home computer, and since then they have never known a world without complete connectivity. Through this new technology people from all over the world could speak freely, sharing ideas across borders few had crossed before.
In all cases there are Aquarius-types of ideas revolving around a few key points. One is the invention of new technologies. Another is the hope for a free, fair, open society that is totally equal and uncensored. This comes, of course, with a fair bit of critical cynicism about the world and how it is currently working. But revolution is born of frustration, and change is spurred by the desire for a better life for all. Rebellion is destructive, but important. Nothing could develop without the sudden flashes of insight, the inspiration drawn from the suffering of others, and man’s collective desire to see their fellow man flourish to the best of his capacity!
The Individualist Art Movement rose to prominence in the art world in the 1910s to communicate the social and political ideas of the time. Futurism depicted futuristic things like speed, technology, cities, and industrial themes. Cubism depicted objects from a multitude of viewpoints so the “big picture” could be seen. Expressionism portrayed the emotional reality of the artist, rather than the visual reality. And Dadaism was a nonsensical anti-art that expressed public rage and disappointment at WWI. All of these parts by themselves comprise the basic ideologies of the Aquarius sign. Together, they explored ways in which the artist’s views were connected to the larger world around them. Meanwhile, the late 90s saw the rise of Digital and Virtual Art Movements, where the art consisted of computerized images and effects. A great example is Pixar, the animated studios that revolutionized the movie industry with animated children’s movies. Whereas the former used artistry to depict technology, the latter used technology to create art. This trend still continues today, having been birthed by computers and other programs becoming a popular part of day to day life.
When it comes to popular subcultures of the time, those found here are different than others because they do not have a distinct style or name of their own. In the early 20th Century, there were clubs for various kinds of like-minded individuals that would meet and create together. They shared ideas, communicated ideals, worked over political and philosophical ideologies, wrote stories and poems and enlightened one another with their revolutionary art. Travel then to early internet culture and you see the same things, only with the larger, international community. People built websites, shared ideas, art, videos, graphics, and expressed themselves liberally. Through online forums and databases even those with minimal education could suddenly access a world of information. From there the internet has grown, and this generation with it.
Both generations are high-minded and hopeful about the future because they know humanity has the collective drive for a better world. Even in the darkest times their pessimism is about the present, not the future. They believe in science, facts, technological advancement, and the power of what people can do when they band together for a cause. They also possess inventive minds capable of meeting the new challenges of an inter-connected world. Spontaneous change does not scare them, and neither does how quickly the world is advancing nowadays. In the past they have always been hopeful, and in the present they remain optimistic of what new inventions are right around the corner.
URANUS IN PISCES (1919-1928, and 2003-2010) first occurred between WWI and WWII, when western society feared immigration and influences from eastern Europe following the Red Scare. These themes arose again during the second era with the War on Terror, this time against Muslims and Middle Easterners. In both cases you have a war being fought overseas while citizens at home cower at the thought of these dangerous, foreign ideas fouling their culture. And in both of these cases, these revolutionary fears were born out of delusion.
In Pisces, Uranus picks up on the emotional undercurrents of society and frees them through imagination, creativity, and illusions. When you look to the art movements of these times you see themes budding out from the unconscious mind, as though artists were trying to express their ideas through symbolism and shapes. In the 1920s art was inspired by popular ideas coming out of psychology at the time, particularly from Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung. These two wrote extensively on the nature of dreams, hidden desires, symbols, archetypes, spirituality, and the unconscious. Meanwhile, there existed entire subcultures that revolved around delusion and escapism in all forms. And we now see art and subcultures with the same themes but with more modern technologies and values.
The 1920s saw the rise of the Surrealist Art Movement, where artists painted impossible distortions of reality. This art was heavy with symbolism to better depict both dreams and the personal subconscious. Scenes in these paintings were unrealistic in nature but painted with realistic precision to create unnatural, hallucination-like landscapes. The aim was to cross the line between the true and the imagined and to make the viewer question the reality of their existence. Following this is was the second time period, which continued with the Digital and Virtual Art Movement right before it. Special effects evolved so quickly that animated movies began to surpass hand-drawn ones, and old-school effects faded into computerized fantasy-landscapes. In both we see Piscean qualities of blurring the lines between the real and the imaginary, immersing the audience in a fictional place that looks and feels like it could be real. These ideas serve to help others escape into a setting where magic might live, if only for a while.
As far as subcultures go, the Flapper girl at first appears to be a young, rebellious girl with no solid moral ground to stand on. She was reckless because she did not want to settle down and be a proper young lady, preferring to go out and party, drinking and kissing men along the way. But her style became popular despite her torrid affairs and horrid manners, chiefly because of her love of herself, her attention-grabbing style, and her “modern” outlooks. Not bound to social convention, she took many lovers and escaped with a drink into popular culture, where she became a symbol for the creative spirit. Yes, she was scandalously sexy. But she was also the first kind of woman to embrace her boyish figure when corseted-curves were in; to cut her hair when others had long curls; to shorten her skirt, wear her lips red, and trip on her boots in the big cities. She was just as dumpy and lovable as she was sweet. And the public fell in love with her careless whimsy.
(The second time period saw a few subcultures, but none stand out as iconic just yet. That takes time. But some trends in particular were the Skater/Hip Hop culture, the Boho/Folk culture, and the Emo/Scene culture.)
It is remarkable to compare two periods in history that are many, many decades apart and see similarities between them. In both we see fear (born of the media’s illusions) compelling people to be wary of the neighbours they welcomed earlier. We see citizens believing who they should hate, who they should run from, and the many ways society could slip into chaos by deviating from the norm. And yet we also see artists delving deeply into the nature of the human mind, pulling out fanciful depictions of abnormality. And we see our culture embrace those on the outskirts of society, who stole our hearts despite everything about them being “wrong”. Those with this planet here are inspired by their dreams and by loving and accepting all those in society. Universal love may not seem revolutionary, but it is. And it might be one of the most important revolutions yet.
We look to this planet to see where society is experiencing great bouts of change and innovation, spurred by enlightenment and a desire to break out of old confines. It begins with artists and subcultures and works its way into the rest of society, influencing media, art, politics, and technology along the way. The negative side of Uranus often shakes things up out of boredom, a need for excitement, or a need to imprint its own individual ideology on the masses.
The next planet is Neptune! Click below to keep reading!