The Corona Generation

The Covid-19 crisis will have huge social and economic implications for everybody. But it will have particular symbolic significance for the Corona Generation: the young people currently coming of age, who until now have travelled by the unimaginative label ‘Generation Z’. The Corona Generation is the one for whom schools and universities have closed their […]

The journey from self to selfie

Once upon a time (that is, before the millennium), there was no such thing as a ‘selfie’. People used cameras to capture an image of the world or the people around them. The closest they got to a selfie was when they persuaded someone else to take their photo. But the idea that photography could […]

Engaging with the Corona Generation

In recent years, we have become obsessed with generational labels as a way to make sense of tensions within society. Conflicts over economic, social, political and cultural resources are routinely expressed as conflicts between generations – in particular, the Baby Boomers, born in the two decades after the Second World War, and the Millennials, born […]

Covid-19 is not a ‘generation war’

We need intergenerational solidarity more than ever.* The Covid-19 pandemic will have huge consequences: for human life and health, for the global economy, for people’s livelihoods. Coping with these consequences largely depends on developing a strong sense of social solidarity: drawing on the ties that bind us to our communities, friends, and families, and setting […]

Stop Mugging Grandma: news and reviews

Review by Toni Calasanti of Virginia Tech: ‘Ageism, Generational Rhetoric, and the Rhetoric of “Generation”’, Contemporary Sociology (2021) 50(6), 453-459. https://doi.org/10.1177/00943061211050045a Review by Laura Isobel Paddon of Southampton University in Ageing and Society (40:4), April 2020, pp.921-922. Interview for BBC Radio 4 programme ‘OK, Boomer!’, 2 March 2020. Quoted in article by Melanie Wiseman in The Beacon Senior […]

Good things to watch and listen to during the Covid-19 crisis

I am using this page to collect together recommendations from friends about online lectures, podcasts and activities – the stuff you never had time to watch or listen to, and some for exercise or fun. It is mainly a way of keeping track of recommendations and quite random so far, but please feel free to […]

Debate: Do baby boomers owe millennials an apology?

Debate broadcast on the Ideas from the Trenches series on CBC Radio, Canada, 8 November 2019.  Bruce Cannon Gibney and Jennie Bristow are on opposite sides of the ‘Boomer-blaming’ debate. They are both aware of each other’s work, but had never spoken directly until IDEAS brought them together for this episode. Jennie Bristow says the Boomer […]

‘OK Boomer’

Over the past few weeks, the ‘OK Boomer’ meme has gone viral, leading to an offline epidemic of earnest commentary. The whippersnappers of ‘Generation Z’ have taken to TikTok – a social-media platform that seems to be about sharing chill-ironic lip-synching video-selfies – with a flurry of music, artwork, and follow-on merch responding to criticisms […]

Ageism is putting all our retirements at risk

Pensioner poverty, we are often led to believe, is a thing of the past. Apparently, the Baby Boomer generation has been so successful at defending its interests that the greedy old buggers are raking it in. It is claimed that we live in a ‘retirement aristocracy’. Pensioners spend their days jetting off on holiday or […]

The futility of generation wars

From the early years of the 21st century, the idea that old people have screwed up the world has become the received wisdom. From economic crisis to environmental catastrophe, from the Brexit vote to the election of Donald Trump, from the lack of affordable housing to the persistence of ‘unaffordable’ pensions, blame for a whole […]

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