About Me

My name is Spencer. I'm 23 years old, and I'm a junior at Princeton. So far college has taken me five years. I've taken time off to work, transferred to USC and come back, and learned a lot along the way.

I like to think about life and what I'm going to do with mine.

I've met a lot of people my age with the same sorts of thoughts so feel free to read, take surveys, and comment.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Our parents' generation

Pretty much every single adult that I've talked to, including my parents, seemed to have enjoyed college. I've been going around asking my friends' parents and other adults I know (from the ages of 40-60), what they thought about college and what the social scene was like back then. So far, of the 15-20 graduates I've talked to, most tell me that there were parties and people did hook up, as they do nowadays; however, there were some obvious differences. Most of them don't recall such a large population of students excessively drinking and using drugs as there presently is. And along similar lines, many don't remember a lot of the social scene revolving around "getting fucked up" and engaging in meaningless sex. They told me that such social activities did occur back then, but with much less frequency and by far less people.*

An even larger distinction in their generation concerns how other students viewed those big partiers. Most parents tell me that those girls who slept around were labeled as sluts and looked at as such. Whereas now, I believe that we (most students), even those that don't sleep around, do not look at our peers as morally inferior or disgusting etc., and even if we do, it's on a much lesser scale than it was during our parents' generation. We've accepted the current social trend as fact and as just an aspect of college life. We don't necessarily have to like it, but why has such a social trend grown so fast? And why don't we do anything about it? Some teachers and administrations have tried and failed to curb such activities, but, as I mentioned in an earlier post, that's not going to stop anything. This needs to be a student movement, not an administrative one.

You may call me old fashioned based on the fact that this loosening of sexuality bothers me, but that's really not the point I'm trying to make. The purpose of what I'm writing remains that there has been a big social change. I'm not by any means making a commentary on women's rights or sexuality or anything related to that. I'm simply asking: why change in this direction? And why so fast? In seemingly one generation, the social culture of college has drastically moved towards a larger party scene with the main goal of getting drunk or getting a buzz and hooking up.

*Keep in mind that I've only talked to a very small group of individuals. I need to conduct a large survey to get an accurate description of college social life a generation ago. What I talk about here is purely based on those responses that I have gotten while talking to those fifteen to twenty adults.


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