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SILAS OLA ABAYOMI

SONGSOPTOK THE WRITERS BLOG | 4/15/2017 |



Introduction and the Concept of Generation Gap:

Every human society is made up of different groups-groups separated-by age, status, and social elements; elements that create differences, perhaps contrast   in habits, beliefs, traditions, and culture among the overlapping groups, resulting in diverse generations identified by gaps and breaks under society’s metrics.

Just like Gestalt principle or law of multiple and complex scenes making up the universe “with objects consisting of parts, which may be composed of similar parts” so is every human society is made of several parts. Parts, yes, even sub- parts with distinct features-that define and give-each human society unmistakable, perhaps, definite and indubitable personality.

Ironically, the complexity of groups and the associated sub-groups in all and every human society provides the basis for Gap, which separates a generation of “people within a delineated population who experience the same significant within a given period of a time” from another says, Pilcher Jane.

Therefore, gap in this context isn’t the regular “long, narrow opening or line of breakage made by crack or splitting, especially in rock or earth” rather a social gap that creates individual generation identity in a defined human society.

Explaining the Generation Gap concept using gestalt theory-brings to fore-how society’s composition or structural make up differs; more so, how the component parts and their differences produce a unique human society.

Understanding Generation Gap: Example from United States.

Generation Gap may not be a new social concept, ancient world and European nations during Greco-Roman era experienced snail-speed changes among groups in the traditional agricultural and non-urbanized society. However, developments that followed Reformation in Europe in 16th and 17th centuries changed the face of generation gap. Moreover, in the past century 1914-2014, world events had significantly changed socio—cultural and political dynamics, creating a new man and a woman, and a new human society, altogether.

For instance, the present United States of America is a victim, or a product of six scientifically proven generation gaps:
Greatest Generation
Silent Generation
Baby Boomer Generation
Generation X
Millennial or Generation Y
Generation Z

Greatest Generation-generation that witnessed the great depression, according to Tom Brokaw- those who saw, tasted, and lived with greatest hardship in history. This group may be identified by their prudence, make-do-with-what-you-have; non-credit card user, conservative, compulsive savers, except for items like automobile, homes, or anything of long term values-investments-shares and bonds.

The Silent Generation: people born between 1925 and 1945-children born to parents of little financial security-the small family generation. The Korean War veterans, a more docile or quiet group, obedient generation, no-question-or-do-not-ask-generation, either for fear or do not want to rock the boat. The generation that lived during Senator Joseph Raymond McCarthy’s anti-communist activities. The general opinion about this group was because of fear of “McCarthyism,” fear of being arrested by the State-the Silent Generation was obedient to a fault.

The Baby Boomer Generation: children born between World War 2 and 1964, the hippie (hippy) movement generation premised on psychedelic music and sexual revolution, the generation that challenged traditional values and codes relating to sexual behavior.

The movement that allowed permissive sexual behavior and attitude such as pre-marital sex, homosexual, pornography, public nudity, use of contraception, and abortion previously considered immoral and anti-social. The Vietnam War antagonists, generation of social and political changes in America-The Civil Rights Generation.

The Generation X the “disaffected and directionless” or “overlooked generation; lost generation, American neglected middle child” sandwiched between Baby Boomer and Millennial. This group is characterized by high level of doubt, trust no government, more of narcissism,  what is for me generation; even though, there are well educated, the group has worst social dislocation in America, most unstable home, the generation of single parents-either as a mother or father.

The Millennial or Generation Y- this generation may not have a definitive start and end dates, but between 1980s and 1990s; a fast moving group, with little or no room for patience. The “Bring-your-own-device-trend” (BYOD). A chronically addicted to mobile devices, and for its dynamism and strength, the group is computer savvy, very adept to Graphical User Interface (GUI); at home with every computer operating system (OS), guru in multi-tasking, navigating from one homepage to another, incredibly sophisticated “technology wise, immune to most traditional marketing and sales pitches…”

A racially and ethnically diverse group; love to watch Cable TV channels, satellite radio, internet, e-books, magazine, and e-purchase and business. Have no interest in faith or religion, but want more freedom that is political. The “Generation Me.”

The Generation Z-the whizkid, IGeneration or Homeland generation, this group falls between1995 and 2012, a highly diverse group from highly diverse parents. The group will be a highly sophisticated because from home to school, making friends, and mostly, all activities of daily living are done by means of technology.

Moreover, because they are always by themselves most of the day-when parents are at work-they seem to be more independent; a significant feature that may shape this group for the future greatness-entrepreneurially. Perhaps, this generation may take a new future name as Obama Generation or Generation Barack Obama.

Future of Mankind and Generation Gap.

Having analyzed the six overlapping generation gaps in United States, which of course provides a clearer understanding of what may happen in other human societies globally-generation gap should be seen as outcome of social-cultural and political engineering, every society undergo from time to time.

Development leading to generation gap may or may not be under human control; however, with technology on the fast lane that keeps redefining human’s ways of life in the digital world, humankind should be ready for more gaps-within a short period; more so, the creation of sub-groups within a larger with multiple identities.

As artificial or natural barriers are given way to the onslaught coming from technology-future generations-regardless, of where they live may have similar generational features within the same period. Behavioral pattern may be same, actions-political, economic, and social may be similar.

In fact, humans in the future may become mechanical, operate digital mind, and technologically wrapped up in everything they do with little or no room for human relations. People will become robotic.


[SILAS OLA ABAYOMI]

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